Islamabad: Pro-Taliban militants have
resurfaced in areas on the outskirts of the northwestern
Pakistani city of Peshawar and are trying to enforce their
writ through actions such as a ban on shaving beards.
The militants have resumed their activities in
Sheikhan area, a suburb of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa capital Peshawar
located near the restive Khyber tribal region.
Local residents said all barbers in the area had closed
down their shops after the terrorists kidnapped one of them,
the Daily Times newspaper reported today.
"Terrorists kidnapped barber Ali Asghar two weeks ago.
They released him only three days ago, with a warning that he
would be killed if he restarted shaving beards in his shop,"
said Muhammad Nasir, another barber in the area.
Nasir said all barbers in the area had now stopped
shaving beards as the terrorists had threatened them with dire
consequences for violating the ban.
After military operations in Bara area of Khyber tribal
agency, militants had disappeared from Sheikhan and life had
returned to normal.
However, the militants have again started challenging the
government`s writ in the area by taking advantage of the lax
security situation in the wake of devastating floods.
Before the military operations in Bara and its
adjoining areas, pro-Taliban militants had imposed
restrictions on barbers and fines on women who left their
homes without any male relatives.