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Qawwal Amjad Sabri killed in Karachi gun attack

June 22

KARACHI: Renowned Qawwal Amjad Sabri was shot dead in Karachi Wednesday afternoon, after unknown assailants fired at his vehicle in the city's Liaquatabad area.

Additional Inspector General Mushtaq Mehar told Dawn that two men riding a motorcycle fired shots at the car, terming the incident as “targeted killing.” He said the motive of the killing is unknown as of now.

Sabri, 45, and an associate were travelling in a car in Liaquatabad 10 area, when unidentified gunmen fired at their vehicle, critically injuring him. The two were shifted to Abbasi Shaheed hospital immediately, where Sabri succumbed to his injuries.

"Two riders used 30-bore pistols to shoot Sabri five times, the bullet to the head took the qawwal's life. The attackers took the Hassan Square route to escape," said DIG West.

"We have cordoned off the area and will arrest the culprits using all our resources," added the DIG.

Police officials recovered five 30-bore casings from the scene of the attack, which have been sent for forensics.


Water shortages hit Karachi's poorest

June 21

Waiting up all night for water that’s only turned on for two hours at a time, once every two weeks.

That’s what Karachi’s poorest face – while its richest citizens have full swimming pools and drink only bottled water.

The Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders said on Sunday that water scarcity in Karachi had reached new heights and it could damage the national economy.

The government should take immediate steps as the concerned departments have failed to fulfill half of the water requirement of the city, it said.

Karachi needs 110 billion gallon water daily but it is getting 45 billion gallons which is insufficient, said Islamabad Chamber of Small Traders patron Shahid Rasheed Butt.

The highly influential tanker mafia is the major beneficiary of the intensified water crisis in the economic and financial capital of Pakistan, he added.

Shahid Rasheed Butt said the industrialists of Karachi are forced to pay around Rs 4 billion to tanker mafia to keep their units running while shortage of water has taken toll on textile and value-added industry.



This guy saved 70 people in Orlando shootings. His name is Imran Yousuf

June 19

While one man went on a killing-spree at Orlando’s gay nightclub, there was another present that night who came to the rescue of the unsuspecting people and succeeded in saving dozens.

Imran Yousuf, a bouncer at the Pulse nightclub, knew something was horribly wrong when he heard the crack of gunfire. A Marine, who had served in Afghanistan, Yousuf’s training quickly kicked over.

Orlando shooter was regular at gay nightclub he rampaged.

“The initial one was three or four” shots, said Yousuf, a sergeant who left the Marine Corps last month. “That was a shock. Three or four shots go off, and you could tell it was a high-caliber [weapon]. Everyone froze. I’m here in the back, and I saw people start pouring into the back hallway, and they just sardine-pack everyone.”

Speaking to CBS, the 24-year-old said he knew there was a door behind the panicked crowd, but people were too overwhelmed to unlatch it. “And I’m screaming, ‘Open the door! Open the door!’ ” Yousuf said. “And no one is moving because they are scared.”


A lady cop Zara returns 2.4 millions to its owner

June 13

Lahore: A lady cop Zara Mehmood set an example of honesty by returning a huge amount of 2.4 millions to its owner.Zara Mehmood who was performing her duties at State Bank building,found a bag ,full of currency notes. She tried to find the real owner and deposit the bag to SP Civil Lines office after failing to trace the owner of the money.

Later, the man approached police station Civil Lines to report the incident where he pleasantly surprised to know that his money was safe .


60-year-old groom remanded in underage marriage case

June 11

SHIKARPUR - The Thul police have foiled a bid for illegal marriage of a 10-year-old girl with a 60-year-old man in district Jacobabad on Saturday.

Acting on the information, the police conducted raid at an ongoing marriage ceremony in village Naseer Samejo near tehsil Thul, within the jurisdiction of B-Section Police Station.

It arrested groom namely Karam Ali Pahore, 60, and rescued minor would-be bride Gulzadi Pahore as well as some event participants.

Nikah Khawan Ameenullah Pahore and the father of the bride escaped from the scene, taking advantage of crowed. Police stopped an attempt of illegal marriage.

The girl said her parents had taken Rs0.4 million from groom Karamullah Pahore for wedding, therefore wedding has been planned at village Naseer Sameejo. The arrested groom has also confessed that he paid Rs0.4 million for marriage to bride’s father namely Gul Hassan Pahore. An FIR was registered with the B-Section police station against the culprits involved.


Pakistan: Mother 'burnt her daughter to death' over marriage

June 11

Police in the Pakistani city of Lahore have arrested a woman suspected of murdering her daughter for marrying without family consent.


Police say the body of Zeenat Rafiq shows signs of torture. She was doused with fuel and set alight.

Her mother Parveen is accused of luring her back from her in-laws.

It is the third such case in a month in Pakistan, where attacks on women who go against conservative rules on love and marriage are common.

Last week a young school teacher, Maria Sadaqat, was set on fire in Murree near Islamabad for refusing a marriage proposal. She died of her injuries.

A month earlier village elders near Abbottabad ordered the murder of a teenage girl who was burnt to death because she helped a friend to elope, police said.

Zeenat Rafiq, who was 18, had been burnt and there were signs of torture and strangulation, police told BBC Urdu. A post mortem examination may establish if she was still alive when she was set on fire.



Ahmadis in Pakistan fear ‘targeted’ persecution

June 07

KARACHI (Web Desk) – Fear has gripped the Ahmadiyya community in the country after a middle-aged man was shot dead earlier this week in the Gulshan-e-Iqbal area of Pakistan’s biggest city, Karachi.

Dawood Ahmad, 55, son of Ghulam Muhiyuddin, was shot dead in Gulzar Hijri, within the limits of Mobina Town police station late Tuesday night by unidentified assailants.

“He was waiting for his friend outside his house when two men came on a motorcycle. They opened fire at him and fled,” said a press statement by the Ahmadiyya community.

His remains will be brought to Rabwah for burial, the statement added.

The assailants also fired shots at Ahmad’s friend who hurried to help him. Both were rushed to the Patel Hospital in Gulshan-e-Iqbal and then to Liaquat National Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries. His friend’s condition is reported to be stable now.

Ahmad was later on taken to Abbasi Shaheed Hospital where doctors confirmed he was shot at least four times.

The victim is survived by three sons; his wife died a few years ago.

“Ahmad was a noble, practicing Ahmadi who had no personal vendetta with anyone. He was targeted solely for being an Ahmadi,” said the statement by the Ahmadiyya community.

“Thirty Ahmadis have been killed in Karachi [since 1984] and not a single murderer has been brought to justice till now,” Jamaat Ahmadiyya spokesperson Saleemuddin said while demanding immediate arrest of the killers.



Pakistanis hit back as clerics say men can 'lightly beat' wives

June 03

ISLAMABAD: Media and activists poured scorn Friday on a suggestion from an Islamic religious body that men should be allowed to “lightly beat” their wives, made in their draft of a women’s protection bill.

The Council of Islamic Ideology (CII) released a draft of the bill on Thursday, their response to progressive legislation giving women greater rights and protection in Punjab.

Media quoted the draft as saying: “A husband should be allowed to lightly beat his wife if she defies his commands and refuses to dress up as per his desires; turns down demand of intercourse without any religious excuse or does not take bath after intercourse or menstrual periods.”

CII proposes husbands be allowed to ‘lightly beat’ defying wives


Alisha was treated outside a lavatory – shame on you, Peshawar

June 02

The Janaza of Transgender Actvist Alesha will be offered at House of Mr.Qamar Naseem of Blue Veins at 50 A OPF Colony Budhni Road Doran Pur at 6: 00 Pm Sharp. This will be the first ever janaza od Transgender offered publically in Khyber Pakahtunkhwa. Even after leaving this world. Alesha is breaking another myths about the funerals of Transgender persons. PHOTO: TRANS ACTION KHYBER PAKHTUNKHWA.

Like any other people, all the transgender community wants is to live with dignity. But in Pakistan, dignity for this sexual minority is almost impossible to find. From birth to their death beds, they are ostracised as if they are the bearers of some invisible disease. Forced to live with their own communities, forced to take menial jobs or to beg on the streets, forced to put up with mental and physical abuse, forced to deal with sexual harassment, sexual abuse, andrape, from their fellow citizens or even those tasked with protecting them, the transgender people of Pakistan are constantly swimming against the tidal waves, and we ignore their plight, because pretending they are invisible is easy.

In a recent heartbreaking case, Alisha, the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Trans Action Alliance coordinator was shot six times on a Sunday in different parts of her body. While details are still emerging, some reports suggest this was a hate crime, while others claim it was the act of a criminal gang that exploits the community to shoot pornographic videos. One can imagine that Alisha was shot because she resisted.

Let’s hope that the K-P government looks into this case and brings the gang to justice, but for a government that until recently believed in negotiating with the Taliban while minority groups burned, what chance does the transgender community have?



Pakistani transgender activist who was shot, then taunted at hospital, dies of injuries

June 02

23-year-old transgender activist died at a northern Pakistani hospital Wednesday after a shooting and delays in medical care that her friends blamed on discrimination in the South Asian country.

Shot seven times in an altercation Sunday, the activist -- who went by one name, Alisha -- was brought to Lady Reading Hospital, one of the largest medical facilities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, where staff dithered over whether to place her in the ward for male patients or female patients.

A friend and fellow activist, Farzana Jan, said men at the hospital taunted them outside the emergency room.

One asked whether Alisha’s blood was HIV-positive, while another asked for Farzana's phone number and invited her to dance at a party.

Alisha underwent medical procedures Monday and Tuesday to stanch heavy internal bleeding but died Wednesday morning, according to hospital spokesman Zulfiqar Babakhel.

At least five transgender activists have been attacked in recent months in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, a socially conservative province next to the country’s northern tribal areas.

All the victims, including Alisha, were members of Trans Action, an advocacy group that has been increasingly vocal in seeking equal rights for transgender people in the province.

The group estimates there are at least 45,000 transgender people in the province, and at least half a million nationwide. Although most live in the shadows, some are hired to dance at weddings and parties, where they are viewed as novelty acts and harbingers of good luck.

Others have little way to make a living, except through begging or sex work.

Qamar Naseem, a member of Trans Action, said that about 45 transgender people had been killed in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa in the last two years.

Though Pakistan’s Supreme Court has enshrined equal rights for transgender people, they say that local governments deny them access to education and healthcare.


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