Pakistani religious scholar and former senator Maulana Samiul Haq, known as the 'father of Taliban', was assassinated in Rawalpindi on Friday, Geo News quoting his son reported. He was also the chief of the hardline political party Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Sami (JUI-S).
Maulana Hamidul Haq said his father was stabbed to death while he was resting in his room. "His driver Haqqani had gone out. On his return, he saw that Maulana Sami was lying in his bed in a pool of bed. He was no longer alive," Hamid told Geo News.
JUI-S's Peshawar president also confirmed Haq's death following an assassination attempt in Rawalpindi. Initially there were conflicting reports about how Haq was killed. Some Pakistani media had reported that he was killed in a gun attack. Haq's son has clarified that the cleric was attacked with knife. He was also the chief of the hardline political party Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam-Sami (JUI-S). Mulana Abdul Majid Hazarwi, a close associate of Haq, also confirmed that he was attacked with knife.
Maulana Sami, 82, was the head of the Darul Uloom Haqqania seminary in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa's Akora Khattak.
He had been a senator between March 1991 and March 1994 and was elected on an Islami Jamhoori Itehad ticket. He had been aligned with the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf for the July 25 election.
Haq's madrassa in Akora Khattak is known for having several top Afghan Taliban leaders among its alumni, including Mullah Omar who had received an honorary doctorate from the seminary. Haqqani Network founder Jalaluddin Haqqani, Al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AIQS) leader Asim Umar and slain Afghan Taliban chief Mullah Akhtar Mansoor were also among the alumni of the seminary which is dubbed as the "University of Jihad".
(With PTI inputs)