LAKKI MARWAT: A police constable was martyred and another suffered gunshot wounds when militants attacked a police patrol in Bannu, while villagers and police repulsed yet another attack on a police post in Lakki Marwat district on the night between Friday and Saturday, officials said.
Separately, the Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) of police claimed to have killed four alleged militants during an intelligence-based operation in Sarband area on the outskirts of Peshawar on Saturday.
Officials said that a police mobile van came under a gun and bomb attack in Domel area of Bannu. A team of Domel police station was on patrol duty when it spotted two suspected motorcyclists and signalled them to stop.
“But they violated the signal, opened fire on the cops and also hurled a hand grenade towards them,” they maintained on Saturday.
Lakki locals, police repulse yet another militant assault
The officials said the cops also fired back at the attackers but they fled to Dogar Umarzai village. Both miscreants entered a house and held up inmates as hostages when they saw policemen chasing them, they said. “When policemen were surrounding the house, the attackers hurled a hand grenade towards them, killing a head constable Pasham Khan and wounding another constable Shah Wali Khan,” the officials explained, saying that the law enforcers returned the fire but both assailants managed to escape.
The officials said that additional force from the township and other nearby police stations and commandos of Quick Response Force (QRF) also reached the area and launched a search for the attackers.
The body and the wounded cop were taken to a local hospital in Bannu from where the body of head constable Pasham Khan was shifted to the police lines for funeral. Bannu Deputy Commissioner Aun Haidar Gondal, DPO Dr Muhammad Iqbal and civil and military officials and people from different walks of life attended the funeral.
In Lakki Marwat, police along with residents repulsed an attack on a key police post in Shahtora Takhtikhel area near Serai Naurang town on Friday night. “A group of terrorists used light and heavy weapons to breach the police post building but they faced tough resistance from the cops deployed there,” said an official on Saturday.
He said bullets and rockets fired by assailants hit the building damaging it but the law enforcers returned the fire.
The police post in the rural locality near Serai Naurang is of vital importance as it was established to maintain law and order and stop the infiltration of militants to the district from the adjacent subdivisions of the tribal districts.
The official said that armed villagers came out of their houses at midnight to assist the cops in fighting the attackers. “The cops and villagers fought bravely, forcing the terrorists to flee,” he added.
Lakki Marwat DPO Ziauddin Ahmed visited the neighbourhood where he met the policemen and area elders. He appreciated them for their joint action that left the cowardly attackers with no option but to flee the area. He said the timely action by cops and local residents helped to protect the policemen and villagers from the terror attack.
The district police chief said that police and area people would defeat the menace of terrorism at all costs.
According to details, CTD and security agencies received information about presence of a group of militants in Sango Sarband area who were allegedly planning a terrorist attack.
“The teams proceeded to the area but soon as the they reached, the militants started indiscriminate firing at the raiding teams and tried to escape,” a senior police official informed adding “the firing continued for a long time”.
The official also informed that during the search and clearance operation, four militants were found dead. Four Kalashnikovs and three hand grenades were seized, officials said, adding that around four militants escaped and a search operation was underway.
Published in Dawn, January 8th, 2023