DERA ISMAIL KHAN, Nov 24: Seven people, three children among them, were killed and 27 others injured when a bomb exploded during a Muharram procession in Bannu Chungi area of the city on Saturday.

Police sources said the bomb, laced with ball-bearings, was concealed in a garbage dump near a mosque along the procession route.

Bomb disposal personnel said at least 10 kilograms of explosives and ball-bearings were used in the home-made device.

(An international news agency quoted a Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan spokesman as claiming responsibility for the bombing. He said the TTP had sent 20 suicide attackers and the government could do nothing to stop the terrorist attacks.)

An official at the District Headquarters Hospital confirmed that seven people were killed and 27 others injured.

Some of the injured were referred to hospitals in other cities because of their serious condition.

Security forces cordoned off the area and launched a search operation after the incident. DIG Qazi Jamilur Rehman said that security had been on high alert and additional forces had been deployed in sensitive areas.

Police arrested a suspect from the blast scene and took him to an unspecified place for interrogation, an official of Cantt Police Station told Dawn.

He said that two brothers were also among the dead.

The DIG said investigators had received information that the cellular phone service was on at the time of the bomb blast.

“We are investigating the issue and it is premature to say that the bomb was detonated by a mobile phone or remote control,” he told a press briefing.

Station Commander Brig Mansur Aziz and other officials were also present on the occasion.

He said the army had not been called out in Dera Ismail Khan as yet, but was on standby.

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