QUETTA/Peshawar - Awami National Party (ANP) leader Daud Khan Achakzai was injured after unknown armed men opened fire on the guest house of party's candidate Zmrak Khan Achakzai in Chaman on Monday morning.

According to Levies officials, the firing incident took place in Alizai area of Balochistan's northwestern district Qilla Abdullah.

Daud is the central vice president of the ANP who was visiting Zmrak, the party's candidate from PB-21 constituency.

The assailants fled away after the incident. The injured was shifted to Quetta hospital. Police have cordoned off the area and started search operation.

Meanwhile, ANP Central President Asfandyar Wali Khan strongly condemned attack on Daud Achakzai and asked the caretaker government to clear its position over repeated incidents of terrorism mainly targeting the party and its candidates.

In a statement issued by Bacha Khan Markaz Peshawar on Monday, Asfandyar said that repeated incidents of terrorism were aimed to sabotage the peaceful environment for elections in the country, but ANP would not succumb to the pressure of these elements to boycott general elections.

He added that the caretaker government was responsible for the security of the candidates and political leadership and it was also the responsibility of the Election Commission of Pakistan to ensure a level-playing field for all political parties in the upcoming general elections.

He said that despite great loss to the party, ANP would further expedite its election campaign to convey a message to those who are attacking the candidates. 

He mentioned that political parties despite giving sacrifices were not boycotting the general elections but the Election Commission of Pakistan should take notice of the repeated attacks and security concerns of certain political parties.

He informed that the recent wave of terrorism was aimed to derail the democratic process in the country and this lawlessness would badly tarnish the image of the country internationally. He also demanded the caretaker prime minister and the Election Commission of Pakistan to take notice of this situation and clear its position over the ongoing terror attacks against ANP and other political parties.

The military has warned of security threats in the run-up to the election on July 25 and said it will deploy more than 370,000 soldiers on polling day. This was the fourth terrorist attack on politicians.

The spate of attacks on candidates contesting the upcoming polls began on July 10, when a bomb targeted a rally by ANP in Peshawar, martyring local party leader Haroon Bilour along with 21 others.

An attack on a Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) convoy in Bannu on July 13 followed the tragic Peshawar incident. The Bannu incident claimed lives of at least four people, while 10 others were injured in the explosion. According to JUI-F leader Akram Khan Durrani, the blast took place near the tyre of his jeep when he was passing through Haved Bazaar after addressing an election rally.

Later the same day, in what was one of the deadliest attacks in the country's history, Balochistan Awami Party candidate Nawab Siraj Raisani along with 131 others was martyred when a suicide bomber blew himself up during an election rally in Mastung's Darengarh area.