Shia welfare organization named "Al-Qaim" in Sheikhupura, Punjab; whether the organization is active and whether on 4 May 2000 12 Shias belonging to Al-Qaim were killed by Sunni extremists in Sheikhupura [PAK39192.E]

One reference was found to a Shia organization entitled Al-Qaim in Sheikhupura, Punjab, Pakistan (Shia News 4 Mar. 2001). A 4 March 2001 article, which detailed the shooting deaths of 12 Shias, stated that "many Shias in Sheikhopura are members of Al Qaim" (ibid.).

While no reference could be found to the killing of 12 members of Al Qaim on 4 May 2000 in Sheikhupura by Sunni extremists, the following information may be of interest.

Several articles refer to the killing of 10 to at least 12 Shias in Shiekhupura on 4 March 2001 (ibid.; CNN 4 Mar. 2001; Guardian Unlimited 13 Mar. 2001; The Tribune 14 Mar. 2001; Sawaal News 5 Mar. 2001). The reports stated that six gunmen on motorcycles killed 10 Shias and two policemen in three separate attacks (ibid.). According to the 4 March 2001 article in Shia News, which reported that at least 12 Shias and two policemen had been killed, the first shooting occurred at a Shia shop in Main Bazar and resulted in the death of the shopkeeper. The second attack occurred in Eidgah graveyard, resulting in the death of seven people who were gathered in the courtyard (ibid.). The last incident occurred in Eid-ul-Azha and resulted in the death of two people (ibid.). The names of those killed were reported as follows: Syed Kazim Shah, Zulfiqar alias Bhutto, Zamir Hussain, Taaha Khan, Arif Butt, Baba Sardar, Akram Khan, Baba Abdullah, Baba Ghafoor Malang, and Tariq Arian (ibid.).

Those groups reported to be allegedly responsible for the attacks included such Sunni groups as Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (The Guardian Unlimited 13 Mar. 2001; Shia News 4 Mar. 2001), Jaish e Muhammad (ibid.) and Sipah-e-Sahaba (CNN 4 Mar. 2001; Shia News 4 Mar. 2001). According to a 13 March 2001 article, the killings were thought to be revenge for the execution of a Sunni "extremist" who had been found responsible for the murder on an Iranian diplomat 10 years earlier (The Guardian Unlimited).

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of additional sources consulted in researching this Information Request.


CNN. 4 March 2002. "Gunmen Go on Rampage in Pakistan." [Accessed 2 July 2002]

The Guardian Unlimited [London]. 13 March 2001. "Sectarian Killing Spree Takes Hold.",7792,451178,00.html [Accessed 2 July 2002]

Sawaal News. 5 March 2001. "12 Killed in Sectarian Violence in Pak." [Accessed 2 July 2002]

Shia News [Rugby]. 4 March 2001. Ghulam Abbas Vazir. "At Least 12 Shias Gunned Down in Punjab." [Accessed 2 July 2002]

The Tribune [Chandigarh]. 14 March 2001. "7 Killed in Pak Mosque Shooting." [Accessed 2 July 2002]

Additional Sources Consulted

IRB databases


Internet sites including:



Frontier Post

Guide to NGOs in Pakistan

Human Rights Commission of Pakistan

News International

Pakistan Daily

Pakistan News Service

World News Connection

Search engine: