LAHORE: In what appears to be a major breakthrough in solving high-profile assassinations and life attempts on religious personalities and professionals, the capital city police claimed on Friday to have arrested six members of the banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LJ) outfit who are allegedly involved in high-profile killings and other criminal activities in the provincial metropolis over the last couple of years. The CIA police also seized unlicensed weapons from the suspects.
Addressing a press conference at Qila Gujjar Singh Police Lines, Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Chaudhry Shafiq Ahmed said that suspects identified as Abdul Rauf Gujjar, of Badami Bagh, Mohammad Sabar, alias Ikram Khan, of Badmai Bagh, Sheikh Farhan Rafique, of Rehmanpura, Shafaqat Farooqi, of Shahdara, Mohammad Hashim, of Badami Bagh, and Suleman Pathan, of Bund Road, had admitted to their involvement in at least 18 murders and murder attempts on high-profile personalities, including Ghulam Raza Jaffari, Syed Ali Hussain Qizalbash, Mubashar Hussain, Shamsur Rehman, Shakir Ali Rizvi, Dr Syed Ali Haider, Khurram Raza Qadri, Allama Nasir Abbas, Asghar Nadeem Syed, Raza Rumi, Abid Naqvi, Dr Saghir Asghar and others.
The CCPO said that these suspects had first targetted Prof Shabihul Hassan on May 19, 2012 in North Cantonment police precincts.
He said that the suspects would target religious personalities from different schools of thought, doctors, lawyers, media persons and other professionals to create panic and terror.
He said that they were also involved in other criminal activities including extortion, drugs, kidnapping from ransom and other heinous offences.
The police claimed that the suspects were also involved in attack on TV anchorperson Raza Rumi. Two unidentified motorcyclists had shot at Rumi’s car near his office in Raja Market in the New Muslim Town area on March 28, killing his driver and injuring his security guard. However, Rumi remained safe. Rumi had said that although he had not received any direct threat, he was reportedly on the hit list of some extremist organisations.
According to the police, ringleader Abdul Rauf had killed also his neighbour Syed Abbas Shah in the Badami Bagh area on May 21, 2012. The gang later killed an advocate, Syed Shakir Razvi, in Old Anarkali on October 19, 2012. The police said that the gang members would first conduct reconnaissance of the movement of their potential targets and then attack them. The CCPO said that the suspects had released a trader of Branderth Road named Suhaib Ahmad after receiving Rs 20 million ransom from his family.
The CCPO added that the police were investigating further and more important information would be shared with the press soon.
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