ISLAMABAD: Caretaker interior minister Mohammad Azam Khan has warned political leaders of an apparent threat to their lives.
In an exclusive interview with Jirga’s Saleem Safi on Thursday night, Khan said Awami National Party’s (ANP) Asfandyar Wali, Pakistan Peoples Party’s (PPP) Bilawal Bhutto Zardari, Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (JUI-F) Akram Durrani, Qaumi Watan Party’s (QWP) Aftab Sherpao, Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) Imran Khan and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam’s (JUI) Maulana Fazl-ur-Rehman are among the politicians whose lives are in danger.
However, on ideological bases ANP and PPP are the two political parties in most in danger, the minister added.
During yesterday’s Senate Standing Committee on Interior, The National Counter Terrorism Authority (Nacta) chairman Dr Suleman had also revealed that lives of political leaders in the country were in danger.
Fears of violence on election day as well as during canvassing of votes has grown since the last week after a spate of attacks at election rallies and candidates.
On Monday, former federal minister and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Sheikh Aftab Ahmed’s vehicle was fired at near Kamra, Attock. No one was injured in the incident.
Also on Monday, ANP leader Daud Khan Achakzai was injured after unidentified persons opened fire on the guesthouse of party’ candidate Zmrak Khan Achakzai in Chaman.
The series of attacks began on July 10, when a bomb targeted an ANP rally in Peshawar, martyring party leader Haroon Bilour along with 21 others.
An attack on a JUI-F convoy in Bannu on July 13 followed the tragic Peshawar incident. The attack claimed lives of at least four people, while 10 others were injured in the explosion.
Later the same day, in what was one of the deadliest attacks in the country’s history, Balochistan Awami Party (BAP) candidate Nawab Siraj Raisani along with 148 others was martyred when a suicide bomber blew himself up during an election rally in Mastung’s Darengarh area.
The intelligence and security agencies had warned of security threats in the run-up to the election on July 25 and said it will deploy more than 370,000 soldiers on polling day.