Slain so­cial ac­tivist Khur­ram Zaki laid to rest

Pakistan Observer - - FRONT PAGE - STAFF REPORTER

KARACHI— Fu­neral prayers for slain rights ac­tivist Khur­ram Zaki were of­fered Sun­day out­side the Chief Min­is­ter House in Karachi. His body was brought in a cof­fin out­side the CM House in the form of a rally. The dead body was buried in the lo­cal grave­yard af­ter of­fer­ing fu­neral prayer. The fu­neral prayer was led by Al­lama Nazir Taqvi.

Sev­eral rel­a­tives, sup­port­ers, and ac­tivists had gath­ered near the CM House for the fu­neral prayers of the prom­i­nent civil so­ci­ety ac­tivist and so­cial me­dia cam­paigner who was shot dead in a tar­geted at­tack by un­known gun­men in North Karachi late Satur­day night.

Ac­cord­ing to lat­est re­ports from law en­forcers, a foren­sics re­port had been pre­pared of the used bul­let shells re­cov­ered from the scene of the crime. Police of­fi­cers said two sep­a­rate 9mm bore pis­tols were used in the gun at­tack on Zaki and his friends.

The weapons have not been used in any pre­vi­ous crimes, said the Se­nior Su­per­in­ten­dent of Police Arib Mehr. “We are car­ry­ing out fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tion,” he said.

The mur­der case was reg­is­tered ear­lier on Sun­day at the Sir Syed police sta­tion.

Zaki was a re­search scholar, for­mer jour­nal­ist, blog­ger, and hu­man and civil rights ac­tivist. He was pop­u­lar on so­cial me­dia as the ed­i­tor of the web­site Let Us Build Pak­istan, an on­line fo­rum which claimed to “spread lib­eral re­li­gious views and con­demned ex­trem­ism in all forms”.

Zaki and a friend were sit­ting at an out­door restau­rant in Sec­tor 11- G of North Karachi when at­tack­ers on two mo­tor­bikes sprayed him with bul­lets and fled.

“Zaki was sit­ting at a cafe where he was tar­geted by four armed men ar­riv­ing on two mo­tor­cy­cles,” Muqadas Haider, a se­nior police of- fi­cial said.

The two friends along with a passer- by, iden­ti­fied as As­lam, were wounded and taken to the Ab­basi Sha­heed Hos­pi­tal. Zaki was later moved to the Aga Khan Hos­pi­tal, where he suc­cumbed to his in­juries.

SHO Iftekhar of the Sir Syed Police Sta­tion said Zaki had re­cently shifted to North Karachi from Gulis­tan- e- Jauhar.

Speak­ing to re­porters, Zaki’s widow said that her late hus­band re­ceived sev­eral death threats due to his crit­i­cism of banned out­fits and cam­paign­ing against ex­trem­ism.

“He re­ceived a lot of death threats. He had openly posted on Face­book that he and his fam­ily were re­ceiv­ing threats,” said Khur­ram Zaki’s widow. “My hus­band has been taken from me. I urge you all to call for the cul­prits to be brought to jus­tice.” She said that her fam­ily was still in dan­ger and that the gov­ern­ment had not pro­vided any se­cu­rity to them.

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