ISLAMABAD - Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Hamid Saeed Kazmi and his gunman sustained bullet injuries in an assassination attempt here Wednesday while his driver succumbed to injuries on the spot. The incident took place when the minister left his office situated some yards away from Police Station Aabpara. As his car moved towards Blue Area, a business hub of the federal capital, two armed persons riding a motorcycle, who reportedly had chased the vehicle, opened indiscriminate firing at the ministers car, which later hit a roadside tree. Some of the bullets hit the gate of a house situated at the opposite side of the road, however no injury was reported. It was observed that around 11 bullets were fired at the windscreen, windows and back door of the car. After the incident, the injured minister, his driver and gunman were immediately shifted to the Federal Government Service Hospital. According to the hospital sources, Kazmi received a bullet in his left leg and his knee bone was damaged which was fixed after an immediate surgery. Later, the corpse of the driver was shifted to Pakistan Institute of Medical Sciences for autopsy. Talking to TheNation, Dr Shareef Astori declared that the Kazmis condition was out of danger. His left knee was fractured by the bullet, which was fixed by a surgery and later he was shifted to VIP Ward, as his condition was stable, he further informed. He told that the gunman of the minister sustained three bullet injuries in chest and he was being operated. Doctor Farrukh told TheNation that driver Younis sustained 4 bullet injuries, which damaged his head and he passed away. Talking to media persons, Interior Minister Rehman Malik declared it an incident of target killing and termed it a reaction of Swat operation. He said there were two assailants who had attacked the ministers. He said an investigation team had been constituted to probe into the incident. Deputy Speaker National Assembly Faisal Karim Kundi also visited the hospital. He condemned the incident and said that it took place due to the security lapse. He added that Kazmi was receiving threats and the authorities concerned should provide him proper security. Senior Superintendent of Police Tahir Aalam Khan told the media persons that eyewitness had informed when minister left his office, two motorcyclists chased him and opened fire at his vehicle near GPO Chowk. He added that there was a possibility that the assailants were more than two. The SSP said that according to initial investigations, the attackers used pistol and kalashnikov in the attack and police had collected bullet cases from the scene. Police have started collecting evidences from the spot while we have also found some things which will help out the police in investigation, he stated. However, police source informed that a pistol and some bullets were found from the area, which were supposed to be used in the incident. To a question, the SSP said it seemed that the assailants were locals and had not come from outside the capital, however he added that police were examining the incident thoroughly. He told that every minister had a police squad for security purposes but he did not know where his squad was at the time of the attack. State Minster for Religious Affair Shagufta Jamani while talking to media persons during her visit to the hospital said that Kazmi was already receiving threats. Replying to a question she informed that Kazmi had not been provided with police security squad, as it was not given to every minister. She added that the incident took place close to the Police Station Aabpara but no police officer came out to rescue the minister. Talking to the media person, Health Minister Mir Aijaz Hussain Jakhrani condemned the incident and termed it a coward act. He directed hospital administration to provide all possible medical facilities and full official protocol to the injured minister. He sympathised with the victims of the tragedy and wished early recovery of the minister. Meanwhile, President Asif Zardari has expressed his deep shock over the attack and directed to make every possible effort to arrest the perpetrators. The President said that Pakistan was a frontline state in the war against terror and would spare no effort in confronting the challenges posed by the extremists and terrorists. He directed best possible treatment for the injured. He also directed that an initial investigation report must be submitted to him. He also expressed his grief over the death of Kazmis driver and prayed to Almighty Allah to shower his blessings on the departed soul. The president also announced compensation of Rs one million and Rs five lakh respectively for the driver of the minister and the gun man who was wounded in the attack He also announced the provision of equivalent employment to the nearest of kin of the victim. Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani also strongly condemned the incident and termed it deplorable. The Prime Minister who is currently in Libya on an official visit denounced the attack and issued directives to hold an inquiry into the incident. He said the perpetrators of such heinous crime would not be spared. He expressed the resolve to eradicate the menace of terrorism and extremism from the country. He also expressed grief over the killing of Kazmis driver. Agencies add: Unidentified gunmen shot and wounded religious affairs minister, Hamid Saeed Kazmi, in a brazen attack in Islamabad that killed his driver, officials said. Kazmi was travelling in his official car when he was attacked near his office in the busy Melody Market area of Islamabad, local police official Mansha Hussain told AFP. Kazmi, a religious scholar from Barelvi sect and vocal opponent of the Taliban, belongs to a moderate religious family from Multan. The attackers struck as the minister was leaving his office. I was standing outside our office when I saw two gunmen escaping on a motorcycle, Iqbal Siddiqui, a ministry official, told Reuters. Local television news channels showed images of Kazmi with what appeared to be a leg wound. Khalid Hussain, a doctor at Islamabads Federal Government Services Hospital, said Kazmi was in a stable condition. A bullet has caused a compound fracture in the lower leg of the federal minister, government hospital chief Shaukat Hameed Kiani said. His condition is stable but he is in a state of shock, Kiani said. Another doctor in the hospital, Shazia Nazir, told AFP that Kazmis driver was brought in dead with a bullet wound in his forehead and that the ministers guard was seriously injured. Islamabad police chief Tahir Alam said that according to preliminary information, two men riding a motorcycle opened fire on the ministers car before fleeing. Police were investigating and collecting evidence from the site, Alam told AFP. It is a targeted attack, there is no security lapse, federal health minister Aijaz Jhakrani told reporters. Kashif Bajwa, 26, a pedestrian, said he heard firing near Melody Market during the busy afternoon. I saw the ministers car had ploughed into a tree about 150 metres from his office. His guard was on the front seat, he was wounded. The ministers driver had a bullet in his head... I understood he is dead. The minister was also wounded, Bajwa said. Later I saw about a dozen policemen came in a pick-up truck, they all appeared scared, he said. Another police vehicle arrived later and the minister was taken to a nearby hospital, he said. No one immediately claimed responsibility for the attack. Islamabad police chief Alam said he suspected the Taliban, who are waging a deadly insurgency across the country, carried out the attack. The minister was one of the key personalities condemning the Taliban and their terror acts. It is possible that he could be their target, he said. We have collected some evidence and we are investigating, he added. His elder brother, Mazhar Saeed Kazmi, blamed the attack on security failure. Todays incident shows security failure, he said, vowing that the struggle against terrorism would continue. We have been receiving threats because we are against terrorism, we are against Taliban, we are against Baitullah Mehsud, we are against suicide attacks, said Mazhar Saeed. Interior Secretary Kamal Shah said the minister had been provided with security after threats were made against him. We are investigating if there was any lapse, it takes time to investigate, Shah said. Police have arrested few suspects soon after the attack on the minister, a police spokesman said. He said raids are being conducted while checking has been enhanced at all the entry and exit points of capital. Few arrests have been made in this connection while security has been further beefed up, he added. Police have started checking hotels and guesthouses and public places in the federal capital. Patrolling by law personnel has been enhanced in order to avert any untoward situation. Extra police force has been deployed at the public and sensitive places to further enhance security and to protect the life and property of the citizens, the spokesman maintained. The army launched a campaign in April to clear the Taliban from Swat and Buner and has since bottled up the main militant stronghold in South Waziristan. There had been expectations the Taliban would respond with attacks in cities, but Wednesdays assassination attempt was the first of note since a suicide bomber killed nine people at the top hotel in Peshawar in June. Monitoring Desk adds: Islamabad police arrested security squad of Federal Minister for Religious Affairs Hamid Saeed Kazmi, reported a private TV channel. The security squad had left the spot to get fuel after which the assailants targeted the minister. Meanwhile, Islamabad Police have also arrested 40 other suspects soon after the attack on the minister, a police spokesman said.