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Pak religious affairs minister injured in shootout

Last updated on: September 02, 2009 17:20 IST

Pakistan's Religious Affairs Minister Hamid Saeed Kazmi was injured and his driver killed when motorcycle-borne gunmen fired at his car with automatic weapons in the heart of Islamabad on Wednesday.

Two men on the motorcycle fired at Kazmi's vehicle as he was leaving his office in the religious affairs ministry near the Aapbara area in Islamabad.

Kazmi's bodyguard was also seriously injured in the attack, which occurred a short distance away from a police station and a police checkpost.

The minister's driver was killed instantly and the bodyguard could not return fire due to his injuries, officials said.

Television news channels beamed footage of Kazmi being taken to hospital in a police van, that also carried the body of the driver. From the images it appeared that Kazmi, a spiritual leader who belongs to the ruling Pakistan Peoples Party, had been hit by bullets in the left leg, and his white salwar was stained with blood.

Doctors at the Polyclinic Hospital, where Kazmi was taken said he was out of danger and would undergo surgery as a bullet had fractured a bone.

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