LAHORE: The district government has ruled out that Christians were the target in the Gulshan-i-Iqbal Park attack.
“Christians were not the specific target in the blast. It was not the park meant for Christians only. It was for all Pakistanis. Today was Easter Day and a holiday. People visited public parks in large numbers,” District Coordination Officer retired Capt Muhammad Usman told reporters here on Sunday. He said the law enforcement agencies were investigating the incident from all aspects.
As the news of the blast at Gulshan-i-Iqbal Park broke the people in other parks started evacuating in panic. There had been a sense of fear among them.
“I received a call from my brother who asked me to return home immediately as a blast took place in Gulshan-i-Iqbal Park,” said Azeem Rafique who had gone to Minar-i-Pakistan along with his wife and three children.
Traffic jams were witnessed on the roads outside the city parks soon after the blast in Iqbal Town as the people rushed out of the parks. Even those visiting the Joyland at Fortress where the security was better than the other public places preferred to leave for their homes.
Meanwhile, the government has announced cancellation of Jashn-i-Baharan which was taking place in Jilani Park (Racecourse). The Canal Mela has also been cancelled.
On the other hand, the grieved relatives of the victims and injured did not let some PTI leaders, including Shafqat Mahmood, enter a hospital who reached there to inquire after the injured. ‘Go Nawaz Go’ slogans were chanted there.
Published in Dawn, March 28th, 2016