QUETTA: After an interval of a few weeks, sectarian targeted killings resumed in Quetta on Tuesday morning as two brothers belonging to the Hazara community were gunned down outside the regional passport office near Joint Road.
According to a senior police officer, Mohammad Tahir and Mohmmad Qadir had come to the post office to get their passports made and were attacked outside the main gate of the office at 7.15 am.
The assailants were on a motorcycle and fled the scene after opening fire at the two brothers. “Both men died on the spot and another man of the Hazara community received bullet wounds,” police said.
The bodies and injured were taken to Sandeman hospital where stringent security measures were adopted to thwart another attempted attack. The injured, identified as Manzoor Ali, was referred to the Combined Military Hospital (CMH) for security reasons, sources in the hospital said. “It was sectarian target shooting,” another senior investigating officer said.
No group has so far claimed responsibility for the assault.
It is pertinent to mention here that around 28 people of Hazara community have been killed in the recent spate of target killings this year. Some police officers investigating sectarian killings, such as SSP Crime Investigation Department Shahnawaz Khan and sub-inspector Sayed Jamal Shah were also gunned down in Quetta in the recent past. On the other hand, some religious scholars of Sunni sect were also victims of targeted attacks in the provincial capital and religious parties believe that some elements are trying to instigate sectarian violence in Balochistan.
Published in The Express Tribune, May 16th, 2012.