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NRI surgeon, wife murdered in S Africa

Anwar Kadwa, 50, was South Africa's only Indian origin plastic surgeon.

india Updated: Oct 08, 2005 18:15 IST

The murder of an Indian origin plastic surgeon and his wife in South Africa has left the police wrestling for clues.

Anwar Kadwa, 50, and his wife Muneira, 49, were at their home in the elite suburb of Crown Minesin Johannesburgwhen the killers struck.

Kadwa, South Africa's only Indian origin plastic surgeon, was shot six times and his wife once, in their bedroom just hours after he had returned from the special Ramzan evening prayers at the nearby mosque.

The killers fled immediately, ruling out the prospect of a botched robbery.

As the home was plunged into darkness when the attackers reportedly caused an electrical short, the couple's son Riaz, a student at Wits Universityin the citysought help by shouting from a window. His wife and sister hid in a closet, calling for help on a mobile phone.

The family was too traumatised to speak to anyone. A family friend and chairman of the Johannesburg Central Community Police Forum, Saleem Thokan, who lives on the same street, was one of the first to arrive on the scene.

Kadwa was hailed by friends, colleagues, and patients as a "gentle person" who had initiated a special project to help destitute people, especially children, undergo surgery for cleft lip and palate problems at no cost.

On the day of his murder, Kadwa had performed the second of the many operations needed by one-year-old Jaun van Niekerk, who was born with 11 clefts. Kadwa took the responsibility of treating the baby after learning that his unemployed parents could not afford the costly operations.

Kadwa was the head of plastic surgery at Wits University for three years before starting private practice in 1990.

First Published: Oct 08, 2005 18:15 IST