Ghazala Javed, a popular Pakistani singer who defied the Taliban‘s ban on song and dance, was shot to death along with her father on Monday night in a drive-by shooting.
The Pashto singer and her father were in Peshwar province when a gunman on a motorcycle fired multiple shots at her vehicle. CNN reports that police official Imtiaz Altaf stated the singer’s ex-husband is a suspect in the case, but that the Taliban were most likely not involved.
Javed was a popular singer among young, progressive, ethnic Pashtuns in northwest Pakistan, and recorded many songs in her native Pashto language, according to CNN.
Javed, 24, and her father were leaving a beauty salon for a music show on Monday when unidentified gunmen opened fire, shooting her six times and her father once. They were rushed to the hospital, but both died there, according to Dawn.com. Senior police officer Dilawar Bangash stated:
“Two men on a motorbike sprayed bullets and fled leaving them in a pool of blood.”
Bangash added that, “We have registered a case and launched an investigation. The murder seems to be result of some internal dispute.”
The Pakistani singer married Janangir Khan, a businessman, in 2010, but left him to live with her father again after discovering he had another wife, and also because he attempted to ban her from singing, according to Dawn.com.
The Times of India reports that, along with leaving her husband, Ghazala Javed filed for the dissolution of her marriage. Because of this, police suspect that her husband may be responsible for the murders, especially because the area Ghazala was shot, Peshawar’s Dabgari Garden, has been a known safe haven for singers, dancers, and musicians, according to RFERL.