Security forces patrol roads in Quetta. —File Photo

QUETTA: Security forces on Tuesday foiled a major bid of terrorism by defusing a 50 kilogram heavy bomb in Sariab road area of Quetta, said officials.

Security forces, on a tip off, spotted a rickshaw with 50 kilogram of explosives installed in it in Sariab road area of Balochistan’s restive capital.

Officials said that unknown miscreants had planted the bomb in the rickshaw. “Rickshaw was being brought to main Quetta city,” a security official who requested not to be named told Dawn.Com.

He however said that no arrests were made during the operation. Bomb disposal squad was quick at the scene to defuse the heavy bomb. “Had miscreants succeeded in parking the rickshaw there would have been a major terror attack,” said the official.

A suicide-bomb, targeting Shia Hazaras had killed more than 90 people including women and children and wounded 200 others on Feb 17.

And in a similar attack, at least 93 people were killed and 121 wounded on Jan 10 when two suicide bombers blew themselves up at a crowded snooker club in Alamdar Road area of Quetta city dominated by the Shia community.

Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf had imposed governor rule in the province under article 234 of the constitution after the attack.

Surrounding areas were evacuated before the bomb disposal squad started defusing the bomb on Tuesday. The official said rickshaw driver was also taken into custody for interrogation.

Later, the rickshaw was shifted to Kechi Baig Police Station for further investigation.

Other than sectarianism, Balochistan is also rife with militants and hit by a regional insurgency which began in 2004, with fighters demanding political autonomy and a greater share of profits from the region’s natural resources.

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