Four members of a family – a man, wife, daughter and the woman’s niece were found murdered in their house situated in Dhoke Paharian, Adiala Road here on Monday morning.

The four persons were shot in the head, while they were asleep.

Three other children of the couple, a son Bilal and two daughters, Hajira and Rimsha escaped as they were asleep in a separate room, the police said.

A doctor at the district headquarters hospital (DHQ) said that each of the four victims sustained one bullet injury in the head that caused their sudden death.

The victims were identified as Sher Afzal, 42, his wife Asia Bibi, 38, their daughter Shamsa Bibi, 19 and Ezza Noor, 12, Bibi’s niece, who had been staying with her aunt for a long time as her parents lived in Basali village.

Saddar Circle Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Salim Khattak said that initial investigation suggested that they were murdered by Imran who had earlier eloped with 16 years old daughter* of Afzal.

According to available details, the suspected killer shot the four persons in the head using a pistol from a very close range. The shooting resulted in instant death of the four persons.

The killer managed to escape from the crime scene.

The gruesome incident came to light when Bilal, 8, went to his uncle’s house and told him that his father, mother, sister and cousin were killed by a man he identified as Imran.

The uncle informed the police about the incident.

Following the information, a heavy contingent of police headed by Khattak, Saddar Bairuni Police Station SHO Malik Muhammad Yar and the investigation team of the Homicide Investigation Unit (HIU) reached the crime scene and cordoned off the area.

The investigators collected evidence from the murder site and called Rescue-1122 to take the bodies to the DHQ.

The DSP said that the killer was believed to be Imran who had also eloped with the young daughter of the deceased man. He said that the suspected killer belonged to Chiniot and was staying with his uncle in Kalyal Village.

The police official added that the suspected killer was learning mobile repair work and used to sell ice-cream during summers.

“We have started searching for the couple and would arrest the suspected killer soon,” he said.

A family member of Afzal said that Imran was Afzal’s neigbour in Kalyal.

Later, he developed relations with the 16 years old, while Afzal shifted to Dhoke Paharian in a new house.

He said that Imran was staying with his uncle Asif in a rented house and police took two people including Asif into custody to trace Imran’s whereabouts.