In a poor neighbourhood, a mild-mannered scrap trader’s neighbors were shocked to learn on Friday that he was being detained in connection with an attempt on Imran Khan’s life.
Shamshad Ali, 34, told AFP that anytime the two of them crossed paths in the street, they used to exchange pleasantries. He spoke softly and without a hint of rage, in my opinion.
After being shot at during a political rally in the eastern city of Wazirabad on Thursday, Naveed Ahmad is the only suspect in custody.
Ahmad is heard confessing to attacking Khan in an alleged confession video that was leaked by the police and used by the government. Ahmad claims that he did so because Khan’s protest disturbed the call to prayer, which calls Muslims to mosques five times.
Interior Minister Rana Sanaullah of the government said that religious motives were behind the incident.
However, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) has denounced the incident, calling it a “conspiracy” and blaming government officials and military leaders for planning it.
On the outskirts of Wazirabad, in the town of Sodhra, AFP discovered Ahmad’s family home padlocked and located in a filthy, narrow alley surrounded by open sewage.
According to neighbors, His mother, wife, and two sons were reportedly picked up by police immediately after the attack. The former prime minister was attacked and sustained non-life-threatening leg injuries, which caused him to stop moving toward the federal capital.
Punjab government officials confirmed the suspect’s identity, however, police have not yet commented on the incident.
Ahmad visited the local mosque “very often,” but Muhammad Munir, who leads the call to prayer there, thought of him as “the kind of a person who minds his own business.”
The 55-year-old claimed that she had never heard any bad things mentioned about him. “I never witnessed him fighting or using abrasive language with anyone.”
According to 26-year-old Abrar Ahmad, who is unrelated to the suspected attacker, “Naveed was a simple lad and had no leanings towards any religious party.”
Numerous neighbours claimed Ahmad had worked in Saudi Arabia and had inherited a rubbish shop from his deceased father.
Local grocer Muhammad Saleem, 36, remarked “I am shocked at how Naveed, who comes from a poor family, dared to make such an attempt.”