26 killed in blast near Lahore's Ferozepur Road

Published July 24, 2017
Rescue workers move the body of a victim at the site of an explosion in Lahore. —AFP
Rescue workers move the body of a victim at the site of an explosion in Lahore. —AFP

At least 26 people, including nine policemen, were killed while 58 others were injured in a bombing attack near the Arfa Karim IT Tower on Lahore's Ferozepur Road on Monday afternoon.

Lahore's DIG Operations Dr Haider Ashraf said that the blast, which occurred at around 3:55pm, was a "suicide attack" and that “police were the target”. The Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility, stating that a "suicide attacker" had used a motorcycle bomb to target police officials.

A CTD spokesperson confirmed that nine policemen were killed in the blast. The injured included at least six policemen.

Rescue 1122 teams shifted the injured to nearby hospitals, where an emergency had been imposed.

Punjab government spokesperson Malik Mohammad Ahmed said the attack had occurred at an old vegetable market in the Kot Lakhpat neighbourhood in Lahore. The area is a busy locality and the office of the Punjab chief minister is located nearby.

Another police officer, Kashif Aslam, said the bombing targeted policemen who were providing security for the Lahore Development Authority, which was involved in demolition work targetting encroachments nearby. Anti-riot police had been deployed for the activity.

Police and other law enforcement personnel had reached the site of the incident soon after the bombing and cordoned off the area. Forensics teams had also collected evidence from the blast site to determine the nature of the explosion.

Condolences pour in

Condolences poured in following the blast. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Punjab CM Shahbaz Sharif, Army Chief Gen Qamar Bajwa and others expressed their grief over the loss of lives in the attack.

Lahore has been targetted by terrorists in recent months.

Another blast, targeting a census team in April, had resulted in the deaths of six people, including five forces personnel.

A suicide blast on February 13 had ripped through a camp of protesting chemists in front of the Punjab Assembly, leaving 13 people dead and 70 others wounded.

Last year, in a terrorist attack in Iqbal Park targeting those celebrating Easter, 72 people had died and over 300 had been injured.

Provincial Law Minister Rana Sanaullah, while talking to the media after Monday's attack, said that the incumbent government has overcome the menace of terrorism by "70 to 80 per cent".

"We have started an operation against terrorist organisations and the situation is much better as compared to what it was in 2011-12," Sanaullah added.

Scenes from the attack

security officials inspect a destroyed vehicle after an explosion in Lahore.—AFP
security officials inspect a destroyed vehicle after an explosion in Lahore.—AFP

At least 15 others have been injured, confirm police officials. —DawnNews screengrab
At least 15 others have been injured, confirm police officials. —DawnNews screengrab


Opinion

Pak-Saudi relations
Updated 17 May 2021

Pak-Saudi relations

Gulf states, led by Saudi Arabia, will be key to Pakistan’s economic recovery in a post-Covid context.
Cuisine and culture
17 May 2021

Cuisine and culture

There is a drive towards the creation of a ‘national cuisine’ landscape as well as greater insight into region-based diversity.
Cooperation or conflict?
Updated 17 May 2021

Cooperation or conflict?

The fear of an economic and technological rival has created insecurities being reflected today in US behaviour.

Editorial

Palestine bloodbath
Updated 17 May 2021

Palestine bloodbath

One wonders whether the right of self-defence allows a country to butcher toddlers and the disabled, as Tel Aviv has done in Gaza.
17 May 2021

Registering madressahs

DURING the past two decades, several attempts by successive governments to standardise and regularise madressahs ...
17 May 2021

LSM growth

THE robust growth in large-scale industrial output since July last year has generated a kind of economic optimism...
16 May 2021

Riyadh-Tehran thaw

SEVERAL official pronouncements over the last few days have confirmed that efforts are underway behind the scenes to...
16 May 2021

Ruthless evictions

FOR a state to deprive residents of their homes without providing for alternative housing for them is a dereliction...
16 May 2021

Wheat concerns

THE new official projections for provisional wheat output suggest that Punjab may harvest around 20.5m tonnes of...