Maulana Sami-ul-Haq, a Pakistani cleric known as the father of the terror group Taliban, was shot dead on Friday, a relative and his deputy told news agency Reuters. Local reports said he was killed in the garrison city of Rawalpindi.
Haq, 82, was a revered figure in Pakistan and Afghanistan whose views carried enormous weight among the Taliban on both sides of the border.
He had been aligned with Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan's ruling Tehreek-i-Insaf party for the July 25 elections, Dawn news reported.
Tucked away in a dusty Pakistani town off the main motorway to the Afghan border, his Darul Uloom Haqqania university was the launching pad for the Taliban in the 1990s and is still often described as the incubator for Islamist terrorists.
He was killed by unidentified attackers in a house where he was staying, his son was quoted as saying.
Some reports said he was stabbed.
(With inputs from Reuters)