TURBAT: Unidentified gunmen fatally shot six labourers in Turbat in Balochistan’s Kech district in the early hours of Saturday, police said.
District Police Officer (DPO) Imam Bux told Dawn.com that the incident occurred in the early hours of the day when a group of armed men barged into a residence in Turbat’s Satellite Town area and indiscriminately shot the labourers. Several people were injured.
The victims had been based in the house of a local contractor and were there for construction work when they became the target of the attack, the officer added.
“Upon being alerted, the police arrived at the scene promptly.”
DPO Bux said that a case would be registered at a CTD police station and an investigation was under way to establish the motive behind the incident.
The injured were identified as Rizwan, Shehbaz, Wasim, Shafiq Ahmed, Muhammad Naeem, Ghulam Mustafa and Touheed.
Interim Balochistan Chief Minister Ali Mardan Khan Domki expressed his deep sorrow over the loss of lives and called for an official report from the relevant authorities.
He strongly condemned the incident, emphasising that the targeting of innocent labourers was reprehensible.
He asked the investigators to thoroughly examine the incident from all perspectives and provide a comprehensive report, underscoring the need to utilise all available resources to apprehend those responsible.
Separately, Balochistan Governor Malik Abdul Wali Khan Kakar mourned the lives lost in the attack and called upon law enforcement agencies to be swift in apprehending the individuals responsible for the incident.
The incident serves as a grim reminder of a 2015 tragedy in Turbat when gunmen killed 20 construction workers and injured three others in a pre-dawn attack on a labourers’ camp near Turbat. In a similar manner, the Kuch victims were targeted while they were asleep at their camp.
The tragic incident prompted Balochistan Chief Minister Ali Mardan Domki to suspend the Senior Superintendent of Police (SP) district Kech and order an inquiry.
The CM strongly condemned the attack and vowed that the perpetrators would be brought to book.
The two injured in the attack were shifted through a special helicopter on the directives of the CM Balochistan.
The chief minister stated that it was a cowardly act and that the development of Balochistan cannot be stopped through such brutal acts.
Caretaker Information Minister Balochistan, Jan Achakzai also condemned the killing of labourers. He said the terrorists involved in the brutal attack would be brought to justice. “Protection of every citizen is government’s responsibility”, Achakzai said.
Earlier, security forces killed three terrorists and recovered a cache of arms and ammunition during an intelligence-based operation (IBO) that was initiated to clear their hideout in Turbat. According to a statement issued by the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the slain terrorists were involved in firing incidents on security forces and civilians, besides planting of improvised explosive devices on Turbat-Hoshab Road in general area Gishkore.