Targeted killings in Rawalpindi: Who is responsible?

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News Analysis |

Two sanitary workers of Turkish Company Albayrak were killed and one critically injured in a brazen armed attack in Nishter Street of Sadiqabad by two unidentified gunmen on Saturday. These are the latest deaths in a killing spree that has caused the deaths of 6 AlBayrak workers in the Rawalpindi area.

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The two dead bodies were shifted to District Headquarters (DHQ) Hospital for an autopsy where they were identified as Saqib Hussain son of Ghulam Muhammad, hailing from Railway Colony and Asif Masih son of Khalid Masih of Iqbal Town.  The shooting spree launched by unknown gunmen continued for more than 10 minutes causing a wave of panic among the locals.

Apparently, the same unidentified shooters had earlier murdered two sanitary workers of Albayrak and injured three others in two separate attacks they launched within limits of PS Sadiqabad. On June 3rd, 2017, Ashir Asif, son of Asif Masih was attacked and killed by two unknown shooters near Chandni Chowk Murree Road.

The killing spree has unleashed a wave of protests by fellow sanitary workers who are demanding justice.

Similarly, two unknown shooters riding on a motorbike launched an armed attack at Data Ganj Baksh Road and killed Karamat Masih, son of Bashir Masih. The attackers also shot and injured Saghir Masih, son of Majeed Masih. Cases were lodged with PS Sadiqabad against unknown attackers but not a single killer has been arrested so far.

The killings have exposed the serious flaws in the police department of Rawalpindi. The much vaunted Dolphin Force was nowhere in sight while the killers acted with impunity for a full ten minutes. According to sources due to the inability of the Police to apprehend the target killers, the authorities have decided to engage the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD). Earlier in the Asher Ashraf case, the police had arrested a few members of the deceased claiming the killing to be part of a family enmity.

The killing spree has unleashed a wave of protests by fellow sanitary workers who are demanding justice. A large number of sanitary workers gathered outside RIC and protested against the killing of two of their colleagues. They demanded the government to provide security to the sanitary workers.

The shooting spree launched by unknown gunmen continued for more than 10 minutes causing a wave of panic among the locals.

CBA Rawalpindi President Haji Farooq Ahmed Khan vehemently denounced the armed attacks on poor sanitary workers of Albayrak in the city and demanded the government and law enforcement agencies to provide adequate security to the workers at workplaces. He also added that all workers would donate a day’s salary to one of the widows.

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All Pakistan Local Workers Government Workers Federation and PTI city chapter under the leadership of Malik Zaheer Awan staged a protest demonstration against the killing of sanitary workers outside the mortuary at DHQ. They called on the government to transfer the investigation to a competent authority and apprehend the killers.

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