Mulana Aurangzeb Farouqi

 On 25th December, 2012 Maulana Aurangzeb Farooqi was once again targeted near Moti Mahal area of Gulshan e Iqbal. Ahle Sunnat Wal-Jamaat (ASWJ), Maulana Aurangzeb Farooqi, survived an armed attack in which his driver, a private security guard and four policemen died.

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Maulana Azam Tariq

Maulana Azam Tariq (Urduاعظم طارق) (March 1962 – October 6, 2003) was leader of the politico-religious organisation Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan, born in Chichawatni. The Sipah-e-Sahaba is a Sunni, Deobandisectarian terrorist organization, which was officially banned by the government of Pakistan in August 2001 for its violence against theShi’a community.[citation needed]

Personal life

Azam Tariq was the half brother of Ahmed Madni,[1] a cleric associated with Ahl-i-Sunnat Wal Jamaat ]Ahmed Madni was also assassinated, along with his son, in Karachi.

[edit]Sectarian ideology

A graduate and teacher at the Karachi madrassa Jamia Islamia, Azam Tariq began to associate with Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, a hardline cleric from Jhang who had become known for his sermons against the Shi’a denomination. Jhangvi invited Tariq to run his madrassa in order to promote his ideology. Following Jhangvi’s assassination in 1990, Azam Tariq inherited the top position in the group, when he survived the explosion in Lahore that killed another prominent front-runner for the slot, Ziaur Rehman Farooqi. During this time, the Sipah-e-Sahaba operative Riaz Basra developed differences with Azam Tariq and formed his own group, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi.

 Arrest on the charges of terrorism

In August 2001, Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf banned seven alleged terrorist organizations, including Sipah-e-Sahaba, and Azam Tariq was arrested and jailed on charges of terrorism. A spate of killings of several prominent Shi’a leaders immediately followed, targeting those who were allegedly complicit in Tariq’s arrest and the crackdown on his organization.

 Mainstream politics

Azam Tariq was elected three times to the National Assembly of Pakistan in Jhang Sadr, even though his constituency was a predominantly Shi’a region. He contested again in the 2002 elections, while in custody, and was again elected. He was released in November 2002 and provided the crucial one-seat majority to the prime minister, Zafarullah Khan Jamali, under the Musharraf government.


Azam Tariq was shot and killed in an attack on October 4, 2003 near Islamabad as he left the M2Motorway to enter the city. Another leader, Qari Zia-ur-Rehman was also killed. Tariq’s supporters blamed Shi’a sectarians for the killings, and Shi’a leader Sajid Naqvi was arrested several days later. However, the case remains unsolved.
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Malik Ishaq

A Most Dangerous Man
The release of Malik Ishaq, a highly-connected terrorist, speaks well for
Arif Ali / AFP
The Supreme Court of Pakistan on July 15 released on bail Malik Ishaq, leader and founder of Al Qaeda-linked Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, on grounds of “lack of evidence.” The man had been facing a number of cases at the antiterrorism court in Lahore charging him with hundreds of murders. He remained in jail for 14 years while evidence against him gradually decayed and disappeared—a pattern traced by terrorists in custody, none of whom has so far been punished in a country crawling with terrorist organizations.

On his release, he was received outside Kot Lakhpat prison by leaders of Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan, banned in 2001 as a terrorist organization but now—after being renamed harmlessly to Ahle Sunnat wal Jamaat—resting in a legal grey area because of an appeal lying with the higher judiciary. The Sahaba leader heading the welcome party was Maulana Muhammad Ahmad Ludhianvi—recalling an anti-Shia 1980s polemicist who was assassinated in Karachi—who came in handy when the current Army chief, Gen. Ashfaq Kayani, called on Ishaq to talk to the terrorists who had attacked Army General Headquarters in Rawalpindi in 2009. The Army chief’s personal plane had carried Ishaq to Rawalpindi, while another plane belonging to the ISI chief, Gen. Shuja Pasha, carried Ludhianvi.
Sipah-e-Sahaba’s welcome party was hardly a dozen strong, but by the time it reached the border of South Punjab, the numbers began to swell. If in Okara it was a few hundred, and a thousand in Khanewal, it was nearly 5,000 in Bahawalpur—the city of Lashkar-e-Jhangvi’s sister terrorist organization, Jaish-e-Muhammad. When Ishaq arrived in his village of Tarinda Sawai Khan in Rahim Yar Khan, the crowd out to greet him was actually 15,000-strong, as claimed by a Sahaba publication.
Their newspaper, Daily Ummat Karachi, in its July 16 edition said Ishaq had been freed without any “secret deal” and that he had rededicated himself to war against the proliferation of “insulters” of the Companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him) on the Internet as he now fought under the flag of Sipah-e-Sahaba after disbanding Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. How far Jhangvi will be disbanded after appearing on the flag of Al Qaeda’s 313 Brigade (which includes Jandullah and Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan) is yet to be seen. One reason Ishaq has joined Sahaba is that the banning order against it is on hold and this takes him away from the mischief of the antiterrorism law.
According to the publication, Ishaq was wanted in 43 cases, involving 70 murders, out of which he had been acquitted in 37 and awarded bail in eight. The last case, involving planning—from prison—the attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore in 2009 has concluded in another bail at the Supreme Court after which he has been released. Earlier resistance to release by the Punjab government had required Lahore to pay for the monthly sustenance of Ishaq’s family. This time Lahore let him go. Daily Ummat says that, because Punjab was not releasing Ishaq, Sipah-e-Sahaba decided to reach an agreement with Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif on electoral support in Bhakkar from where the latter was elected unopposed with the help of Ishaq’s brother.
Arriving back in South Punjab, Ishaq has consolidated the power of the hard-line sectarian organizations emanating from the state policy of jihad. He is ranked at par with the chief of Jaish-e-Muhammad, Maulana Masud Azhar, famous for his companionship with Osama bin Laden and his linkage with Omar Sheikh, who contributed to the killing of The Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl in Karachi in 2002. Sheikh, too, has been charged with planning terrorist acts—including against then President Pervez Musharraf—from his prison cell in Sindh. Azhar and Sheikh were both sprung from an Indian jail in 1999 and released in Kandahar, after the hijacking of an Indian airliner in Nepal, as a result of a deal facilitated by a Pakistan-dominated Taliban government in Afghanistan.
Ishaq headed a union of shopkeepers in Rahim Yar Khan when he fell under the thrall of Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, the founder of the Shia-apostatizing Sipah-e-Sahaba in 1982 after his contacts with Arab princes enjoying extraterritorial hunting rights in Rahim Yar Khan made him strong. Against the background of an Arab-Iranian confrontation in the region, Sahaba flourished financially, too. The other devotees of Maulana Jhangvi were Jaish-e-Muhammad’s Azhar and Riaz Basra, who was killed in a “police encounter” in 2002 because “no judge could sentence him.” Basra and Ishaq founded Laskhar-e-Jhangvi.
After Ishaq was arrested in 1997 in the wake of the killing of five Iranian Air Force trainees in Rawalpindi, Basra threatened the government with dire consequences unless he was released. Meanwhile, another Lashkar-e-Jhangvi commander, Akram Lahori, went on killing Shias in Karachi, which according to Ishaq was much easier because the Jhangvi cadre there was better trained than in the Punjab. (Training was received in Al Qaeda camps in Surobi, Afghanistan.) Facing trial in Multan, Lahori, responsible for the killing of such well-known Karachi figures as businessman Shaukat Mirza and prominent Shia doctors, was indicted in 2010 after living comfortably in jail for seven years. Witnesses against him in Multan continue to die or disappear. Witnesses against Ishaq also have a hard time surviving, as in the case brought against him by a Shia citizen, Fida Husain Ghalvi, charging that Ishaq had killed 10 of his family.
The Punjab government has made a deal with Sipah-e-Sahaba after seeing its growing clout in South Punjab. One well-known episode was recorded by jihadist newspaper Islam: “Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah visited Jhang and paid his respects at the tomb of the founder of the greatest banned sectarian-terrorist Deobandi organization, Sipah-e-Sahaba, Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi. He led a delegation of the [Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz)] which also included parliamentary secretary Iftikhar Baloch and party M.P.A. from Jhang, Sheikh Yaqub. He also visited the tombs of other Sipah-e-Sahaba martyr-leaders like Maulana Isarul Qasimi and Allama Azam Tariq.”
Threatened communities have reacted predictably. Shia outfit Imamia Students Organization issued the following statement: “The planned release of terror kingpin Malik Ishaq who is also the co-founder of banned organization Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, with the blessing of Punjab government’s weak prosecution and the court’s blind decision is likely to fuel the ruthless killings of Shias across the country.” Sri Lanka, which hoped to get justice for the attack on its cricket team, and Iran, whose cultural consul Muhammad Ali Rahimi was allegedly killed by Ishaq in Multan in 1997, will also be offended. His release was badly timed. President Asif Ali Zardari’s paid a goodwill visit to Iran the same week.
When the Iranian consul in Lahore Sadeq Ganji was assassinated in 1990, the strong presence of Sipah-e-Sahaba in politics prevented the due process of law to unfold. At the Lahore High Court, where the killers faced trial, many judges retired or were elevated before the court was able to pass the obvious death sentence. Sahaba wanted to pay diyat or blood money for the killer it wanted spared, and even approached Iran in this respect. The power of apostatizing sectarian elements has redoubled in 2011 and “legal” political parties have to align with them to survive in certain regions. All it takes is a renaming of the banned organization.
Ahmed is a director at the South Asian Free Media Association (SAFMA) in Lahore.

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Riaz Basra

Riaz Basra (1967 – 14 May 2002) was a Pakistani militant involved in sectarian fighting with Shia elements in Pakistan. Basra founded the militant organization Lashkar-e-Jhangvi in 1996.
Riaz Basra was born in Chak Chah Thandiwala, Sargodha, in 1967. He studied at madrassas in Lahore and Sargodha before joining the political party Sipah-e-Sahaba in 1985. Basra allegedly served in the Afghan War on the mujahideen side, receiving a bullet wound in the leg.[1]
In 1996, Basra broke from Sipah-e-Sahaba to form his own anti-Shia organization Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. The organization takes its name from the deceased founder of Sipah-e-Sahaba, Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, who was killed in a retaliatory bomb attack by Shia militants on 23 February 1990.[2]
Basra was himself killed in a shootout in a Shia village in Vehari districtPunjab.[3] Basra and three other Lashkar-e-Jhangvi members had come to stage an attack on a prominent Shia, but were met with armed resistance by local villagers. A special police brigade arrived to support a half-hour later, ending the fight, during which all four Lashkar-e-Jhangvi members were killed.[4]

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Lashkar-e-Jhangvi لشكرِجهنگوی

Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (Urdu: لشكرِجهنگوی; alternately Lashkar-e-JhangviLJ; English: Army of Jhangvi) is an Islamic militant organization. Formed in 1996, it has operated in Pakistan sinceSipah-e-Sahaba (SSP) activist Riaz Basra broke away from the SSP over differences with his seniors.[1] The group is considered aterrorist organisation by Pakistan and the United States,[2] and has been involved in attacks on Shi’a civilians and protectors of them.[3] Lashkar-e-Jhangvi is predominantly Punjabi.[4] The group has been labelled by intelligence officials in Pakistan as a major security threat.[5]


Basra, along with Akram Lahori and Malik Ishaq, separated fromSipah-e-Sahaba and formed Lashkar-e-Jhangvi in 1996. The newly formed group took its name from Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, one of the co-founders of the SSP. LJ’s founders believed that the SSP had strayed from Jhangvi’s ideals.[1][6] Jhangvi was killed in a retaliatory bomb attack by Shia militants in 1990.
Riaz Basra gained notoriety when he orchestrated the assassination of Iranian diplomat Sadiq Ganji in Lahore.[7] Basra was also involved in the killing of Iranian Air Force cadets visiting Pakistan in the early 1990s, when sectarian attacks on Shias in Pakistan were at their peak.[citation needed] Both acts occurred in the northern city of Rawalpindi and greatly disturbed contemporary Pakistan-Iran relations.
After Basra’s death in May 2002,[8] Akram Lahori succeeded him as leader of LJ.[6]
Malik Ishaq, the operational chief of LJ, was released after 14 years by the Supreme Court of Pakistanon 14 July 2011.[9][10][11][12]


LJ initially directed most of its attacks against the Pakistani Shia Muslim community. It also claimed responsibility for the 1997 killing of four U.S. oil workers in Karachi. Lashkar-e-Jhangvi attempted to assassinate Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif (a Sunni) in 1999.[7] Basra himself was killed in 2002 when an attack he was leading on a Shia settlement near Multan failed. Basra was killed due to the cross-fire between his group and police assisted by armed local Shia residents.
  • In March 2002 LJ members bombed a bus, killing 15 people, including 11 French technicians.
  • On 17 March 2002 at 11:00 am, two members of the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi bombed the International Protestant Church in Islamabad during a church service. Five people were killed and 40 people were injured, mostly expatriates. In July 2002 Pakistani police killed one of the alleged perpetrators and arrested four Lashkar-e-Jhangvi members in connection with the church attack. The LJ members confessed to the killings and said the attack was in retaliation for the U.S. attack on Afghanistan.
    LJ claimed responsibility for killing 26 Shia pilgrims on 20 September 2011 in the Mastung area of Balochistan. The pilgrims were travelling on a bus to Iran.[15][16] In addition, 2 others were killed in a follow-up attack on a car on its way to rescue the survivors of the bus attack.
  • Afghan President Hamid Karzai blamed LJ for a bombing that killed 59 peoples at Abu Fazal shrine in in the Murad Khane district of Kabul on 6 December 2011. Most of the dead were pilgrims marking Ashoura, the holiest day in the Shia calendar.[17][18]
  • Lashkar-i-Jhangvi claims responsibility: 13 lives lost in brutal attack on Shia pilgrims.[19] QUETTA, 28 June: At least 13 people, two women and a policeman among them, were killed and over 20 others injured on Thursday in a bomb attack on a bus mainly carrying Shia pilgrims returning from Iran. Most of the pilgrims belonged to the Hazara community.


LJ has ties to the Taliban, the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), Sipah-e-Sahaba (SSP), Harkat-ul-Mujahideen (HuM), Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), al-Qaeda,[1][6][22] and Jundallah.[23] In addition to receiving sanctuary from the Taliban in Afghanistan for their activity in Pakistan, LJ members fought alongside Taliban fighters. Pakistani government investigations in 2002 revealed that Al Qaeda has been involved with training of LJ, and that LJ fighters also fought alongside the Taliban against theAfghan Northern Alliance. The Pakistan Interior Minister, speaking of LeJ members, stated: “They have been sleeping and eating together, receiving training together, and fighting against the Northern Alliance together in Afghanistan.”
Upon the death of Riaz Basra in May 2002, correspondence between al-Qaeda and LJ seems to have stopped. Basra communicated to al-Qaeda commanders through Harkat ul-Ansar.[1]

Designation as a terrorist organization

The Government of Pakistan designated the LJ a terrorist organization in August 2001, and the U.S. classified it as a Foreign Terrorist Organization under U.S. law in January 2003.[2] As a result, its finances are blocked worldwide by the U.S government.
The group was strongly condemned by Imran Khan, following the February 2013 Quetta bombing in which over 80 Shi’a Hazara civilians were killed. Khan demanded that the LeJ culprits behind the attack be brought to justice and that a special court be set up for trying them.[24]
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