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Security officials at the site of the explosion. ─ DawnNews
Security officials at the site of the explosion. ─ DawnNews
Security officials cordoned off the area. ─ DawnNews
Security officials cordoned off the area. ─ DawnNews
Furniture damaged by the explosion. ─ DawnNews
Furniture damaged by the explosion. ─ DawnNews

PESHAWAR: At least 26 people were killed and 50 others injured when a powerful blast occurred near the National Database and Registration Authority (Nadra) office on Nisatta Road in Mardan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, on Tuesday.

The attack was claimed by Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) splinter group Jamaatul Ahrar, which was also behind last year's deadly blast at Wagah Border.

However, TTP central spokesman Mohammad Khorasani in a statement distanced his group from the Mardan attack, saying “we have nothing to do with blasts at public places,” reported BBC Urdu.

The explosion ripped through the front entrance of a regional branch of Nadra.

“At least 26 people have been killed and more than 50 injured,” said provincial information minister Mushtaq Ghani. “[The] condition of 11 of them is still critical,” Ghani added.

The blast took place at a time when the office was crowded with people lining up to make applications for National Identity Cards (NIC).

Map showing the location of the Nadra office. ─GoogleMaps Map showing the location of the Nadra office. ─GoogleMaps

'Suicide attack'

Deputy Inspector General Mardan Division Saeed Wazir told DawnNews the blast was a "suicide attack carried out by a bomber".

The DIG added that a security guard posted at the office stopped the bomber at the gate, after which he detonated his suicide vest. The suicide attacker was on a motorbike and rammed it into the gate after being denied entry, he said.

Conflicting reports suggest that explosives may have been planted on a motorcycle parked near the Nadra office.

District police chief Faisal Shahzad said the suicide bomber was riding a motorbike. “Apparently the target was the queue as there were around 400 people standing there,” Faisal said.

Some of those critically wounded were taken to the main Lady Reading Hospital in Peshawar city.

Rescue sources rushed to the scene. ─ DawnNews Rescue sources rushed to the scene. ─ DawnNews

Powerful explosion

Officials of the Bomb Disposal Unit that reached the scene of the explosion said around 8 to 10 kg of explosive material was used in the attack.

According to initial reports, the powerful blast took place near the gate of the office and damaged doors and windows in the building. At least 40 people are said to be injured, with some in serious condition.

Human body remains were strewn across the blast site.

Windows of Nadra office shattered by intensity of blast — DawnNews Windows of Nadra office shattered by intensity of blast — DawnNews

The area was cordoned off as rescue and security sources rushed to the site. The injured were shifted to Mardan Medical Complex, while an emergency was declared at all medical facilities in the area.

The office is located on the link road that connects Charsadda to Mardan. Mardan is situated in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, which has seen several terrorist attacks over the past several years — many of them targeting security officials.

Search and strike operation

Earlier in December, a search and strike operation was launched in Mardan, resulting in the arrest of about 327 suspected persons, including 16 illegally staying Afghan nationals, and persons involved in various crimes.

Mardan District Police Officer Faisal Shehzad, talking to media persons, had disclosed that the search and strike operation was carried out in Par Hoti, Bashkhali, Gujraat, Iranabad, Chora, Bhaijan, Surakh Dheray, Katakhet, Barikab, Galyara and localities adjoining the city.

He said they had also established checkposts jointly manned by police and army personnel at different points of the district and around 500 vehicles were searched with the purpose to take suspected passengers into custody if there were any inside those vehicles.

Comments (116) Closed

Haroon Dec 29, 2015 02:40pm

Killing innocents on the basis of any ideology is uncalled for and callous.

Shujaat Dec 29, 2015 02:46pm

Very sad. They managed to strike again. probably in retaliation to the hanging of 4 terrorists today.

Faisal Dec 29, 2015 02:48pm

Here we go again.

Chandra Dec 29, 2015 02:48pm

This is lame how can killing innocent civilians help the cause of any terrorists? God gave life to live not to do suicide!

Faisal Dec 29, 2015 02:54pm

@Chandra its our fault.

divergence Dec 29, 2015 03:00pm

The ugly head of terrorism rises in Pakistan again, every drop of our countrymen's blood is precious

Mehak Gulab Dec 29, 2015 03:00pm

Could be reaction of Zrb-e-Azb... Terrorists targeting soft targets again... Re-iterates need for enhancing security of Govt. offices & re-align our intelligence strategy as well...

Dove Dec 29, 2015 03:02pm

Oh no, not in my town or anywhere please

Indian Dec 29, 2015 03:03pm

Give full power to rangers and wipe them off. Condolence and prayers

As if u care Dec 29, 2015 03:03pm

Where are we heading?

Pashtunyar Dec 29, 2015 03:11pm

Shame on the cold blooded murderers! How can anyone with any ideology justify killings of innovent civilians?

Etwas Dec 29, 2015 03:12pm

Might be an attempt from afghan refugees to displace some important NADRA documents

divergence Dec 29, 2015 03:13pm

I wonder why terrorists always target the innocents

Bikram Thappa Dec 29, 2015 03:15pm

My heart goes for the families of victims. Live and let live

Waqas Dec 29, 2015 03:16pm

No matter are you Taliban or some other outfit killing innocent people not pave path of Janna for you.

Chandra Dec 29, 2015 03:16pm

@Faisal I don't agree if it is anyone's Fault. I see it as opportunism ! Some one gets brainwashed for someone's motives - may it be for power or money or control. It's easy to exploit people who don't question. This is what makes west different than east.

Khwarezmi Dec 29, 2015 03:18pm

Let Pak Army amd Rangers do their job and arrest terrorists before they kill innocent people. Also, speedy trials under Army Courts for terrorists must be enforced even stricter.

Chandra Dec 29, 2015 03:18pm

@Indian An eye for an eye will make the whole world blind!

Lone Ranger Dec 29, 2015 03:23pm

Inna liillahe wa inna ilaihi raaj'oun. This shows a strong and urgent need of a Rangers' operation in KPK alongside Sindh.

Shahid Dec 29, 2015 03:26pm

@Etwas Nope. The records are stored in a centralized databases which has nothing to do with damaging one regional office etc

saba Dec 29, 2015 03:26pm

Intelligence agencies are sleeping!

Angry Pitbull Dec 29, 2015 03:28pm

RIP for those who lost life and pray for quick recovery of injured one.

These evil cowards are targeting the innocent civilians bcos they dont have guts to fight with right people and afraid to face real problems

Patriot Dec 29, 2015 03:36pm

@divergence Because they ARE innocent.

Asif Dec 29, 2015 03:39pm

The only solution to these problems is to register each and every individual in Imam Bargahs, Madrassas and all the other places associated with them. Funding, where is it coming from and who is funding who? That is not a problem but needs will which we lack. Secondly, register all the Afghans and put restrictions on their movement. I am afraid it is too late but still not impossible and will bring some peace.

Iqbal khan Dec 29, 2015 03:44pm

Raheel sharief has to be more tough with theses criminals.We should crack down madarsahs the main breeding ground of these criminals.

Muhammad Saleem Munshi Dec 29, 2015 03:45pm

Yes its uncalled for and atrocious but what is the root cause of this mayhem, let me tell one major cause and remedy, our invisible rulers tied to invisible hands since 1951 to start considering citizens of this blighted nation as human beings with equal rights and stop elimination of those including politicians who even slightly dare to challenge the status quo.

Faisal Dec 29, 2015 03:46pm

Where is IK?

Patriot Dec 29, 2015 03:50pm

@Faisal What's IK got to do with this, can you tell me please??

sbk Dec 29, 2015 03:57pm

@Asif , Terrorists have no country. That is why extremists from all countries go to Syria and Iraq to fight, kill and destroy.

Nasir Dec 29, 2015 04:02pm

@Mehak Gulab These are civilians not Army or police personal. The gate of NADRA office is always crowded.

kashmiri Dec 29, 2015 04:05pm

rip to their soul's

Prasannajit Dec 29, 2015 04:05pm

Approach against terrorism is must for Pakistan establishment.Action should be on all kind of terrorist.

Rahul Dec 29, 2015 04:07pm

@divergence -"I wonder why terrorists always target the innocents"

What a dumb thing to say. That's why they're called terrorists. Who else should they target?

Jawad Dec 29, 2015 04:11pm

Here we go again these animals aren't dead yet

Jawad Dec 29, 2015 04:14pm

So what did they achieved by doing this???? They are making army going after them deep.

Taimoor Khan Dec 29, 2015 04:14pm

This isnt any ideological related event, its purely the work anti Pakistan states who hates us with passion and can go to any extreme to cause harm to our people. Jamaatul Ahrar is known to have foreign sponsors.

Alam Dec 29, 2015 04:18pm

It was expected. Two days before Gen Raheel met Afghan President and agreed to resume peace talks. Today suicide attack, arranged by those who don't want these peace talks make progress. Two days before it was in Kabul. There will be more on both sides if peace talks are held as planned. Pakistan will have to decide whether to keep on suffering or to respond effectively.

Rome cruiser Dec 29, 2015 04:19pm

These people are just criminal.

Alam Dec 29, 2015 04:19pm

@Shujaat It is in response to the decision by Af Pak to go ahead with peace talks.

Iftikhar Husain Dec 29, 2015 04:21pm

Yet another blast killing innocent people these mindless mad bombers must be punishes with their handlers.

Dr. Farooq Khan Dec 29, 2015 04:24pm

They can kill anyone they want and nobody can stop them. Suicide and bomb blasts in public areas is such a coward act that no country can survive from it. Not even US. The only way to move forward is to keep hunting them down.

Die hard Liberal Dec 29, 2015 04:25pm

May it is time to go after the sympathizers and Madrassa and their foreign supporters.

Sudhanshu Swami Dec 29, 2015 04:25pm

Killing innocent, civilians is act of cowardliness. May God give strength to families.

Karam Dec 29, 2015 04:30pm

RIP for those who lost their lives, and prayers for the wounded. A salute to the guard who stopped the attacker, and possibly saved more lives from being lost. Dawn, please highlight the hero's name in the updates for the story.

noshin Dec 29, 2015 04:30pm

very sad! God bless Pakistan and Pakistanis!

Mr M. Tariq Dec 29, 2015 04:33pm

only solution is Triple the budget internal Securities

Pakistan Dec 29, 2015 04:36pm

what happened to zarb e azb

Bilal Khan Dec 29, 2015 04:46pm

It is very difficult to stop suicide bombers and if we want to get rid of these misanthropists then we have to first get rid of their financiers.

Bilal Khan Dec 29, 2015 04:52pm

@Alam I fully agree with you. Some dark forces doesn't want peace talks between PAK and AFG. We have to revamp our policies before it's too late.

Muhammad Arshad Dec 29, 2015 05:00pm

such a sad news

Brar Dec 29, 2015 05:06pm

Loss of human life any where on this earth must be condemned by all, my heart felt sympathies with the families of who lost their beloved members in this cowardic act by these beasts who claim to serve a religion.

Ali Akhtar(Multan) Dec 29, 2015 05:09pm

Deport all afghans back to Afghanistan. Create two massive walls - one in the West; the other on the East. Then put all Suspicious Individuals in Internment Camps. Long Live Pakistan - PAKSTAN ZINDABAD.

Zar Dec 29, 2015 05:10pm

Some people are questioning, is it because of this action or that action by Pak Army. One thing is clear, all the actions army has taken are working. Daily there were bomb blasts, this has now disappeared. Expect attaches take place now and again as these are desperate attempts by terrorists. Do not lose hope, by next December our country will be free from these attaches just be strong and ready to fight them

Naxalite Dec 29, 2015 05:13pm

They are not Servants-of-Islam but Paid Mercenaries.

Naxalite Dec 29, 2015 05:14pm

@Chandra It doesn't, But why Paid Mercenaries ll care for that?

Pep Singh Dec 29, 2015 05:19pm

I dont know that where are the planning for such bombings is executed. Zarb-e-azb must be intensified to get rid of such cold blooded murderers. Pakistani people should also help their army to wipe out terrorist.

Dr.Sadaf Dec 29, 2015 05:20pm

On the same day and almost the same time when opening ceremony of Shaukat khanum hospital KPK was taking place, is there any connection or simply in retaliation of the hangings carried out today.

Brar Dec 29, 2015 05:21pm

@Dr. Farooq Khan You can not get rid of bombs by destroying them but you have to destroy the factories where these bombs are produced.

Gitun Dec 29, 2015 05:28pm

Rest in peace innocents...

Saeed Dec 29, 2015 05:36pm

Inna lillahe wa inna ilahi rajioon. So sad but can any body imagine why NADRA this time. It may be a retaliation to the data of terrorists they have.One incident which is in my mind is after Peshawar attack in September some one issued copies of CNIC of terrorists to media

N K Ali Dec 29, 2015 05:47pm

Inna Lillahe Wa Inna Ilaihe Rajeoon!

Very, very sad of these innocent citizens to lose their lives/ However, this can be a backlash to the recent claims that terrorism is much reduced. Salams

Dunya Dec 29, 2015 05:52pm

So sad. Can anybody tell these young fellows that God has given us life to do good deeds and not to throw it away by killing fellow beings in search of heaven. By bringing so much sorrow, how can you expect to go to heaven has always baffled me.

sbk Dec 29, 2015 05:58pm

After seeing so much killing and destruction in the name of religion, I get a feeling thatthe Non-believers are better people than the so called believers.

sbk Dec 29, 2015 06:01pm

Buddha said," Desire is the cause of all sins and sorrows."

Shyam Dec 29, 2015 06:10pm

It is difficult to understand what prompts these persons to destroy their own life only to kill 10 or 20 innocent people and spread fear in society. Even if someone give them billions of dollars, where they will spend after death ?

lafanga Dec 29, 2015 06:12pm

So the TTP distanced itself by saying "we don't bomb public places". Really. What do they call the attack on Army Public School and killing children?

TTP has safe sanctuaries in Afghanistan backed by Afghan intel agency. We all know this. I am not sure why Pakistan does not do hot pursuit into Afghanistan and take them out. We have means, motive and will to do it so let's get on with it.

MDH( India) Dec 29, 2015 06:13pm

The dastardly act is highly condemnable,

Iqbal khan Dec 29, 2015 06:13pm

Let's not forget that these extremist have the backing of our politicians.Examples are there and if we don't crackdown on these people peace will never come to Pakistan.

Syed Hussain Akbarii Dec 29, 2015 06:28pm

The Mullas and members of all the band outfits believe that all their Suicide bombers and those of them killed will be in jannah with multiple numbers of hoors. On their principles it appears the the Jannah will be full of terrorists. Apparently they are planning to carry on their terrorism in Jannah and convert it also into Hell.

amit ray Dec 29, 2015 06:38pm

RIP. Dont know what they get killing innocent people.

Desi Dimag Dec 29, 2015 06:48pm

RIP departed souls. What these killers want don't know.

Pakistani Dec 29, 2015 07:02pm

RIP..this is all these people can do anymore one day soon they will be exterminated.

naeem Dec 29, 2015 07:17pm

@Faisal: Stop doing dirty politics in the name of the dead!

sbk Dec 29, 2015 07:17pm

Pity the Suicide bombers; They are illiterates; They are poor people; Easily lured with money, drugs and words, to kill people by blowing themselves.

haider Dec 29, 2015 07:21pm

Ranger like operation in KP is need of the hour.

Rupesh Dec 29, 2015 07:24pm

It's necessary to kill terrorists. But killing them won't solve the problem. We must kill their ideology. otherwise numerous terrorists will be produced by the their ideology.

Engr. khan Dec 29, 2015 07:27pm

@Iqbal khan : You have highlighted the root cause.

Shamim Khalid Dec 29, 2015 07:31pm

Since long time Pakistan mention the locations of TTP leadership in Afghanistan but no action has been taken against them, why? Both ISIS and TTP are sponsored by America to create chaos in the Muslim countries.

Nilesh Dec 29, 2015 07:39pm

Sad .... The people in ttp are cowards...

david Dec 29, 2015 07:41pm

Very sad indeed.No nobody has the right to harm any one leave alone killings.what will they achieve.only putting victims families shattered .

Sachin Dec 29, 2015 07:43pm

Sad. RIP. What do these terrorists want ? What do they gain by killing innocents in a market ? Why is Pak Army not shutting out every single conservative religious school in country.

askari Dec 29, 2015 07:47pm

its reaction against hang 4 suspected person hang in kohat

AIZ Dec 29, 2015 07:49pm

Again Shocking .....

kkk Dec 29, 2015 07:49pm

Those who are killing the innocent and those WHO are support them should be eliminated from this earth . no one have the right Of killing any innocent in the any parts Of the world despite cast colour or religion.

Sourabh Dec 29, 2015 07:52pm

This is sad. Really sad. Oh Almighty!!!!!!! please help Pakistan to get out of the cancer of terrorism.

Amer RAO - Toronto Dec 29, 2015 07:56pm

Really sad news, killing innocent people.

Ravee Dec 29, 2015 08:02pm

Oh mighty God save the world from Terrorism. When they learn, what they achieve. It sad countries behind Terrorism. World Civilisation totally collapsed, going back to stoneage.

Khan- Pakistani Dec 29, 2015 08:37pm

We are praising our law enforcement agencies and every day people are killed . Rangers are checking land allotment and cortuption cases whereas innocent civilians are getting killed everywhere and everyday . We need the rethink and reaasign our policies and our priorities . The present strategy is not working .

US CENTCOM Dec 29, 2015 08:38pm

We are saddened to read the news of this cowardly attack on innocent people at the NADRA office in Mardan. We send our deepest condolences to families of the victims and pray for the quick and complete recovery of the injured. These terrorist attacks prove the threat of terrorism remains high, and whenever the masses start to feel a bit safe; the coward enemy strikes at soft targets. There is no justification, what so ever, for killing the innocent people. We stand united with the people of Pakistan and condemn all acts of violence against the innocent citizens.

Abdul Quddus DET - U.S. Central Command

Cyrus Dec 29, 2015 08:39pm

@Asif .... The suicide bomber's family may have been well paid, and he did it for his family.

Zeeshan Dec 29, 2015 08:39pm

We as nation will not be shake further. As we all very committed to finish this misguided People. There way of movement is not Islamic. Islam is our religion and it is peaceful. You can fight to crusaders but not innocent people. They are surely paving their path to Hell.

Skywalker Dec 29, 2015 08:56pm

More crap!!

My condolences to the families who lost their kins, to the parents who lost their children and the spouses who lost their beloved partners.

I pray that we start 2016 with PEACE in our hearts and minds.

Cyrus Dec 29, 2015 09:10pm

@lafanga .... That would mean taking a decision.

Wise Dec 29, 2015 09:13pm

Very sad indeed. No amount of bombing will stop this menace. The only solution is secular, rational education. Religious practices and entertainment programs focused on animosity and revenge should be contained. They should all be focused on peace, reconciliation and forgiveness. That is the way, only way.

itrat khaliq Dec 29, 2015 09:18pm

These demented souls won't stop killing innocent people in these cowardly acts. They are mentally retarded ones , so its useless to reason with them . elimination is only option.

Abdul Basit Dec 29, 2015 09:20pm

There are THREE responsibilities of a Government. 1. Provide security to people 2. Provide Jobs 3. Look after the Health & Education of its people.

This government and all previous five Governments, all failed in these three tasks. Pakistan has basted the last 25 years in slumber. When are we going to wake up.

Random Indian Dec 29, 2015 09:31pm

Condolences and hope death toll doesn't increase... There is only one type of terrorist - bad.

Imtiaz Faruqui Dec 29, 2015 09:39pm

The bottom line is that when people do not get justice and then they have no hope of getting justice ever, they go to such extrime measures. Our system has failed them, and the result can be seen every day, as far as the remedy , there is no remedy. Pakistan is in a big big mess created by the 60 plus years of corruption by the polititions.

Mehdi Raza Dec 29, 2015 09:53pm

Do we know any other country (that is not a warzone) where it is so easy to obtain these banner materials and make bombs as heavy as this?

Really makes me wonder sometime what is going on in this country?

I remember once there was around 100 kg planted in some water tank? Are we really doing any policing? Do we have any rules or is Barood being sold in Kiryana stores here?

Baaligh Dec 29, 2015 10:08pm

Such incidents are not likely to stop unless our rulers decide to choke the terror funding especially the inflow of petro dollars from Arabs. This very important aspect of NAP is not being implemented due to rulers' personal friendship with financiers and so the menace of terrorism continues.

Sajid syed Dec 29, 2015 10:23pm

@sbk , I agree with you my friend. NON-BELIEVERS do not go out killing those who believe in gods of their choice, messiahs of their choice and even those who go out converting people forcefully and by dangling carrots.

Mayank Dec 29, 2015 10:48pm

Both India and Pakistan militaries must run a massive joint operation to uproot all the terrorist organizations around both these nations which are responsible for any and all terrorist activities in both these nations as they are our common enemies.

At least after this we would have only each other to fight against on Kashmir and which is fine as we would know who is our enemy and where they are. This might sound like a joke to you guys but this is a very serious and thoughful comment I have given here.

Skeptic Dec 29, 2015 11:12pm

How do these random killings help these groups further their aim or endear them to the ordinary citizens, I fail to fathom.

Is there any sane person in this group who can explain to all of us, what this murder and mayhem achieves for the group - I am all ears!!! Otherwise you people are a disgrace to the human race.

Parvez Dec 29, 2015 11:40pm

When we only trim the branches of the ' terror tree ' instead of uprooting it......then this is what will keep on happening.

Hopeful Dec 30, 2015 12:02am

Might be trying to destroy NADRA records.

Someone (Pak) Dec 30, 2015 12:29am

@Indian thank you brother.

Someone (Pak) Dec 30, 2015 12:31am

Lets adopt zero tolerance towards these terrorist groups and people, hang them in public, make an example, barbarians!

All the madarrasas need to be thoroughly checked or completely shut down, this country is not for religious extremists!

zulu Dec 30, 2015 01:32am

why us always why

Alam Zia Dec 30, 2015 01:55am

@Chandra only corruption can do it all killing and terrorism

Rotkiv Dec 30, 2015 03:14am

Condolences and prayers for those who lost their lives. I don't understand why Pakistan, which has a high tech targeting capability from the air, and highly trained special forces cannot take the fight to the terrorist's dens. As an Indian, I hope they are able to focus more on that fight instead of the India-Pak frontline, as the Pakistan military's ability to win this (along with other paradigm shifts in their strategy) is probably going to secure peace in South Asia.

L.Ahmad Dec 30, 2015 05:04am

So much for claiming to have success against terrorism. What success?

Najam Dec 30, 2015 05:10am

These people are sick.

Iztraab Dec 30, 2015 05:36am

They are all paid contractors working for third party who does not want peace in Pakistan.

Rupesh Dec 30, 2015 07:18am

Afghanistan can not be blamed for this tragedy. First of all pak-Afghanistan border should be sealed with proper amount of fencing. also heavy deployment of security troops alongside this fencing will solve this problem automatically.

Adnan Aziz Dec 30, 2015 08:56am

Who says Terrorism is over in the country? Please postpone self-praise for the time being.

sampson Dec 31, 2015 02:05am

@Haroon sitting by and watching it being done is no different.