Careem driver shot dead in ‘car-snatching’ attempt




ISLAMABAD: After last month’s homicide case of Careem captain Junaid Mustafa in Islamabad, another driver of the cab-hailing service has been killed in Rawalpindi.

The driver, Sajawal Ameer, 22, died at 10:35 pm in a “car snatching incident”, that was the “second such incident in Islamabad in recent past”, said the company. The slain captain hailed from Chak 60-61/ML near Police Station Saraye Muhajir District Bakhar, and had been working with Careem for months.

According to details, someone on Monday night booked a ride from Deewana-e-Khaas in Rawalpindi and took Sajawal to ‘Lakho’ where according to the police officials, two unidentified men put a gun on his head and tried to get the car under their control.

When he resisted, the snatchers opened fire leaving Sajawal severely injured.

“The culprits then took Sajawal’s mobile phone, cash, and car. Later, they left the car on Chohar Chowk and fled,” said an official of the Rawalpindi police.

The police also said Sajawal was shot multiple times by gunmen as they tried to snatch his car in the Naseerabad police station area.

After the incident, the injured was shifted to a nearby hospital where he lost his life during the wee hours of Tuesday.

Naseerabad Station House Officer (SHO) Chaudhry Akhtar said that the police registered an FIR with sections 394 PPC. While talking to Pakistan Today, he said that the suspects tried to take away the car but the vehicle had a tracker installed that shut down its engine, after which they abandoned the car and fled. The car, Honda ADW-014/ICT was recovered and a case was registered against unidentified persons.

Aamir Mushtaq, complainant of the FIR, owner of the Honda car and a friend of Sajawal Ameer stated in the FIR, “Sajawal was a close friend of mine who used to take my car for driving as a Careem captain every now and then. On Monday at 8:30, he took my car and started driving to earn his bread and butter. Later someone called me and told that Sajawal was shot by unknown attackers and was seriously injured.”

Speaking to this correspondent he appealed to the police high-ups to investigate the matter and bring the culprits to justice.

On the other hand, a representative of the cab-hailing company said the company had provided all relevant data and information to the law enforcement authorities to ensure speedy justice. He also assured that the family of the deceased would receive “due compensation”.

On a question regarding what actions had Careem’s recently-constituted safety committee taken to prevent such incidents from occurring, the official said that the committee was holding meetings, and recommendations were being made to ensure better security protocols were in place.

He emphasised that ensuring the citizens’ safety rested with the law enforcement agencies.

It may be noted that the latest incident comes as in two separate incidents on February 23 and 26, a Careem driver was killed and the other was injured. Valuable belongings of the drivers were also stolen. The killing of a 26-year-old on February 23 prompted Careem drivers to stage a protest where they alleged that the company had revamped its policies forcing drivers to “take the ride even when drivers don’t want to”.