Rawalpindi - The nephew of former Punjab Law Minister Muhammad Basharat Raja was shot dead, allegedly by the brother of a PML-N candidate for the slot of chairman, outside a polling station of UC # 86, Dhamial, yesterday.

Four others also sustained injuries during the clash occurred between the supporters of PML-N and an independent candidate Moeen Sultan Raja.

Pakistan Rangers and heavy contingent of police were also called in to control law and order situation after the firing incident in Dhamial. Police collected four dead shells of 30-bore pistol from the crime scene. Two vehicles were also found abandoned on the firing site while police believed that attackers arrived in one of the two vehicles.

Rescue 1122 rushed to the scene and shifted the victims to District Headquarters (DHQ) Hospital.

The deceased was identified as Shoaib Iqbal Raja, the brother of former Nazim Dhamial Shahid Iqbal Raja, while the injured included Tooran Nawaz Raja, Asif Khan, Riaz and Sikandar, who are under treatment.

According to details gathered from eyewitnesses, the polling process was continuing smoothly in ward # 3 of UC-86 when Ikhlaq Numberbar, the brother of Asad Mehmood Numberdar, PML-N candidate for the slot of chairman, misbehaved with some female polling agents and voters of Moeen Sultan Raja. They said the women called their male relatives including Shoaib Iqbal Raja who immediately reached the polling station to stop PML-N workers from misbehaving with their females. “As long as Shoaib Iqbal Raja stepped out of his vehicle, Ikhlaq opened firing at him. Resultantly, a bullet hit into Shoaib’s head and he died on the spot,” an eyewitness told The Nation. The others supporters of PML-N also attacked the other companions of Shoaib and beat them with clubs and sticks injuring them critically.

The eyewitnesses said that PML-N supporters were heavily armed and resorted to aerial firing. “The supporters of Moeen Sultan Raja including Shoaib Iqbal Raja were unarmed when they arrived on the polling station,” another eyewitness told The Nation.

After committing the crime, the killers and attackers managed to escape from the scene.

Tension gripped the whole locality while a large number of people gathered around the polling station but the polling process remained continued without any pause.

Upon information, personnel of Pakistan Rangers, City Police Officer Israr Ahmed Khan Abbasi and SHO Malik Yar reached the crime scene and recorded statements of eyewitnesses.

Riffat Raja, a relative of the deceased, told police and media that situation went out of control in the polling station when Ikhlaq misbehaved with women supporters of Moeen Sultan Raja. She said that Shoaib along with other relatives arrived at polling station to defuse the tension but Ikhlaq and his accomplices attacked them.

SP Dr Sardar Ghias Gull while talking to The Nation said that police have rounded up some 8 to 9 persons in connection with the murder case. He said that all the accused would be arrested. “Two teams have been formed to arrest the accused. Raids are being conducted at various localities,” he said.

Meanwhile, Regional Police Officer (RPO) Wisal Fakhar Sultan Raja visited crime scene and took briefing from the SP. He directed Dr Ghias to nab the killers without any delay.

On the other hand, heart moving scenes were witnessed in DHQ Hospital where a large number of relatives of Shoaib including Muhammad Basharat Raja gathered. Doctors were conducting the post mortem of the deceased till filing of this report.

“My brother was innocent. He returned from UK a few days ago. He was a hockey player and peaceful by nature,” told a female cousin of the deceased while mourning his death outside DHQ emergency.

Separately, as many as three people got injured when the supporters of PML-N and an independent candidate clashed during polling process in Sandhian ward of Union Council (UC) Darya Galli, Murree, informed sources.

The injured were shifted to nearby hospital for treatment.

According to sources, Sandhian ward turned into a battlefield when Tanveer, an independent candidate, and his supporters allegedly barred the supporters and voters of PML-N candidate for Chairman Majeed Abbasi from casting their votes. On this, sources said, a scuffle occurred between the two parties with freely use of clubs and sticks. As a result, three political workers were injured.