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QUETTA: At least 22 people were killed and dozens injured Tuesday when a powerful explosion ripped through a bus carrying Shia pilgrims in Balochistan's militancy-hit Mastung district.

The bus was coming from the Pakistan-Iran border at Taftan when it was attacked in Dringhar area, on the main Quetta-Taftan Highway in Mastung district, some 50 kilometres southwest of Quetta.

Shafqat Anwar, the Assistant Commissioner in Mastung, said the bus caught fire after the blast. Anwar added that at least 32 people were injured, which included 24 men and eight women.

Provincial Home Secretary Asadur Rehman Gilani said that two buses had been traveling together with security vehicles provided by the government and that the bomb struck one of the buses.

“Two vehicles of forces escorting the pilgrim’s buses were also damaged in the blast,” he said.

Gilani said investigators believed around 80 kilograms of explosives were used in the explosion, though it was not immediately clear what type of bomb was used or whether it was a suicide attack.

“Our priority is to shift the injured to hospitals,” he said, adding that women and children were also among the dead and injured.

Most of the injured were shifted to Combined Military Hospital for medical treatment, he added.

Emergency was imposed in hospitals to treat the injured.

Banned militant group Lashkar-i-Jhangvi has claimed responsibility for the bombing.

Chief Minister Balochistan, Dr Malik Baloch condemned the attack on the pilgrims' bus and ordered inquiry into the incident.

This incident comes only 20 days after an explosives-laden vehicle targeted a passenger bus carrying Shia pilgrims in Hazar Ganji area of Quetta, killing at one and injuring 34 others. The banned militant outfit Jaish al Islam had claimed responsibility for the attack on January 1.

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Comments (21) Closed

Jan 21, 2014 08:09pm

This is Pakistan. Just sickening.

Jan 21, 2014 08:27pm

i would like to appreciate the sincere efforts of our beautiful, tolerant and caring government. thank you Nooray and Immi :/ :(

Mumbai-Pune Express
Jan 21, 2014 08:32pm

Pakistan is doing more effort for proving that Why Pakistan is a Failed state.

Iqbal khan
Jan 21, 2014 08:42pm

Where is our captain whose sole purpose in life is to save scums Talbans.I am sure soon he will give another fatwa that we should talk to Talbans.

Dawn I will continue to give my comments and I don't care you publish them or not.

Jan 21, 2014 08:55pm

This will continue to happen unless funding from a middle eastern country is stopped. Every knows about it but turning a blind eye. Sooner or later, what is being done outside their country, will engulf them too. If this is pure Islam as per them then I think I am better off with what I am.

Asim Khan
Jan 21, 2014 08:55pm

This is why IK is prodding the govt. for talks. You kill their 10 in air strikes, they retaliate by blasting 22 of yours. Endless cycle.

Jan 21, 2014 08:58pm

"Chief Minister Balochistan, Dr Malik Baloch condemned the attack on the pilgrims' bus and ordered inquiry into the incident". At this rate, pretty soon the remaining population of Pakistan will be meaningfully engaged in one inquiry or another. Nice going!

Jan 21, 2014 09:05pm

The best solution to end everyday mayhem is to allow all minorities to have their own state. Let Noora and Taliban Khan to play friendly cricket with TTP in Waziristan, so minorities could enjoy freedom of their own.

.spsingh Spsingh
Jan 21, 2014 09:13pm

Captain should change his mind these monster are not going to change

Dilber Khan
Jan 21, 2014 09:14pm

@Iqbal khan: Mr. Khan, it has nothing to do with the Captain. It is your President/Prime Minister's job to look after his people. Your Prime Minister is busy in trying in to get President Musharaf (who actually looked after his people better then the last TWO monkeys combined) put in jail.

Jan 21, 2014 09:38pm

Blast after Blast !. What PM Nawaz is doing ?.

Jan 21, 2014 10:18pm

why it crime to be shia

Jan 21, 2014 11:02pm

Here is an interesting article in Toronto Star Newspaper "Is the Middle East a failed continent?" written by Richard Gwyn. It describes the failure of ARAB SPRING. Examples being Egypt,Libya,Iraq,Syria etc. It is the Muslims who are killing the Muslims These countries are not subject to any American drone attacks. Mr.Imran Khan of PTI has to condemn these Murderers and deal with them like any other common Murderer. Don't try to cover there naked brutality with drone attacks. While PTI is playing these blame games the life of average citizen is becoming a living hell (No life/property security, no jobs, no electricity and gas etc.) Mr.I.Khan wake up from this one dimensional delusion.

Jan 21, 2014 11:23pm

on cnn gruesome pics of tens of thousands of sunnis being killed in the sectarian conflict of Syria and now this, i think Pakistan should enforce strict policies towards religious violence starting and complete control of what is being said in imambargahs and nothing should be printed without strict govt review ... in addition all religious processions should be banned completely. people should only be allowed to pray and that is it. also during ramadhan those who are fighting on streets and involved and altercations should not be allowed to fast

Jan 21, 2014 11:56pm

Brutality at work once again in Pakistan. Why the Banned militant group Lashkar-i-Jhangvi is not behind the bars this moment as they have already claimed the responsibility for the bombing? What the officials are waiting for ? .....Some more blasts!

Momina Gholam Hussein
Jan 22, 2014 01:03am

@Shahpur: Yeas indeed, a failed state.

Jan 22, 2014 03:21am

Shia communityare really showing a lot of patience. These militants have left no stone unturned in trying to provoke them worldwide.

Sameer H.
Jan 22, 2014 09:22am

@Vijay@Toronto: I am sick of the default reply that the Rulers of this country give as in this case, "the Chief Minister Balochistan, Dr Malik Baloch condemned the attack on the pilgrims' bus and ordered inquiry into the incident" If its in Punjab, then its the CM Shahbaz Sharif condemned the attack and ordered a report within 24 hours" The report that is then relayed to the CM after "24 hours" is the same report that is published in the news the next day verbatim. I can't take this anymore.

Jan 22, 2014 04:57pm

@ to IK n all those who r in favour of dialogue; congrats taliban have started the talks first with the attack on CID Ch. Aslam Shaheed and they r continuing to do so....... keep it up guys ur efforts to engage them into table talk and make a fool out of this nation is working pretty well.

@ Raheel Shareef & PML (N); u guys keep sleeping we'll wake u up when we have enough of it.

Gerry D'Cunha
Jan 24, 2014 12:07am

@SYEDA SARA BATOOL: your question:why it crime to be shia my answer- looks like it is now become crime to even be a muslim

Jan 24, 2014 12:16pm

Why killed shia