Mufti Taqi Usmani survives assassination attempt

KARACHI   –   Renowned religious scholar and former judge of Federal Shariat Court Mufti Taqi Usmani on Friday survived an assassination attempt near Nipa Roundabout in Gulshan-e-Iqbal Town.

The incident, however, claimed the lives of two of his guards; while the drivers, driving the vehicles in which the cleric and his family were travelling, were injured.

According to police, six armed men riding on three motorbikes initially attacked Honda Civic vehicle of Mufti Taqi Usmani and his family bearing number plate BKE-748 as soon as it reached near Federal Urdu University from Nipa Chowrangi. The attackers were, however, diverted as soon as another car, driven by cleric’s friend Maulana Amir, along with his gunman, came near and also came under the attack.

The driver of the renowned cleric who got injured in the incident, however, played sensibly and sped the car to Liaquat National Hospital. However, another car hit a nearby stall.

The injured from the vehicle were later taken to a nearby hospital in which one of them later identified as a security guard succumbed to his injuries while drive Maulana Shahab was critically injured. The bodies and injured were later shifted to Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre (JPMC).

JPMC Director Dr Seemi Jamali said that another person injured in the attack, Maulana Aamir, is currently in critical condition. “Maulana Aamir was brought to JPMC with multiple bullet wounds in the head and chest and has been placed on a ventilator,” she explained.

According to SHO Aziz Bhatti Police Station Adil Afzal, under whose jurisdiction the incident occurred, the deceased travelling with Taqi Usmani was identified as 26-year-old policemen Farooq, son of Rana Hanif. He was posted with Security Zone II.

The security guard, who also succumbed to injuries, travelling in another vehicle, was identified as 35-year-old Sanober Khan, son of Shaukat Khan, an employee with private security company living in Future Colony.

According to SSP Gulshan-e-Iqbal Division Tahir Noorani, 9mm pistols were used in the attack and the six assailants riding on three bikes fired more than 15 bullets at the vehicles.

He, however, denied that the firing incidents took place at two separate incidents and said that the firing took place near Nipa Bridge and the injured were initially shifted at two separate hospitals.

Additional IGP Karachi Dr Ameer Ahmed Shaikh said that it was not a sectarian attack instead, whosoever, carried it out had a plan to disrupt law and order in the city.

He said that Mufti Taqi Usmani usually took this route from his mosque Darul Uloom in Korangi to Bait al Mukarram Mosque in Gulshan-e-Iqbal for leading Friday prayers. “On Friday, he was travelling along with his wife and two grandsons to the mosque, when his vehicle came under attack and he survived the attempt,” he said.

The police has also obtained the CCTV footages of the incident that showed that six assailants on three bikes attacked the cleric and two vehicles and later sped towards Gulistan-e-Jauhar area of the city. The police has initiated probe into the incident from different angles and vowed that the culprit would soon be arrested.

The bodies of the deceased were also handed over the families after medico-legal formalities.

Meanwhile, Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah condemned the target killing incident at Nipa Chowrangi and Nursery, saying that some unscrupulous elements were trying to destroy peace and tranquillity in the city but “We will destroy them and their nefarious design with iron hands.”

He said that peace in the city has been restored with lot of sacrifices by people of the city and law enforcement agencies and now it is dear to us. “We will not allow anybody to destroy this peace,” he said and directed police and Rangers to intensify targeted operation in the city.

In a statement issued from CM House says that the chief minister has taken serious notice of the two firing incidents in the city which claimed innocent lives, including of a policeman. He expressed sympathy with the aggrieved and the bereaved families and assured them that the killers of their dear ones would be brought to book. He talked to IG police and Adl IG Karachi and directed them to improve overall law and order in the city and arrest the killers and their mentors.

Mr Shah believes that the peaceful holding of PSL and flourishing of trade, commerce, social and educational activities in the city were not acceptable to the enemies of Karachi and Pakistan. “We are going to launch vigorous targeted operation against terrorist, outlaws and drug mafia,” he announced.

The chief minister directed Special Branch and CTD to investigate the attack and identify the groups involved in destroying peaceful life in the city.




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