Category Archives: Quetta

53 dead as blast hits Quetta Civil Hospital after lawyer’s killing

QUETTA: At least 53 people were killed in a suicide bombing inside the Civil Hospital on Monday, hospital officials said. Many others were injured in the attack.

There was no claim of responsibility for the blast, which occurred at the gates of the building housing the emergency ward. Bomb Disposal Squad officials confirmed the explosion was a suicide bombing.

“The blast took place after a number of lawyers and some journalists had gathered at the hospital following the death of the president of the Balochistan Bar Association in a separate shooting incident this morning,” said Balochistan Home Secretary Akbar Harifal.


What we know so far

  • Loud explosion inside Quetta’s Civil Hospital
  • At least 53 people killed, many injured
  • Attack may have been carried out by suicide bomber
  • Blast followed killing of senior lawyer in Quetta
  • CM Balochistan says RAW behind terrorism in Quetta

Condemning the attack, Balochistan Chief Minister Sanaullah Zehri told local TV channel Geo News that Indian intelligence agency Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) was behind terror incidents in Quetta.

The CM shared this statement with the media before initial investigations into the blast were completed, and before the nature of the blast was confirmed.

The bomber struck as more than 100 mourners, mostly lawyers and journalists, crowded into the emergency department to accompany the body of Advocate Bilal Anwar Kasi, Faridullah, a journalist who was among the wounded, told Reuters.

Most of the dead are lawyers.—DawnNews.
Most of the dead are lawyers.—DawnNews.

Noor Ahmed, the hospital’s deputy chief surgeon for victims of violent crime, said they were treating about 50 wounded in the bombing.

“I can confirm that so far, 53 people have been killed in today’s bombing at our hospital,” said Ahmed.

According to senior police official Zahoor Ahmed Afridi, most of the dead were lawyers. Several lawyers including the former president of Balochistan Bar Association Baz Mohammad Kakar were reported injured.

Journalists present at the premises also came in the line of fire and the cameraman for DawnNews was severely injured in the explosion. Shahzad Khan, a cameraman associated with Aaj TV, was killed in the blast.

An emergency was declared in hospitals across Quetta and several injured were shifted to other hospitals for treatment.

“This was a security lapse,” Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti said, adding that he was personally investigating the attack. He said the hospital had not received any threats in the past.

Following the blast in Quetta, Inspector General (IG) police A.D. Khawaja issued a high security alert across Sindh.

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif strongly condemned the blast in Quetta and expressed his “deep grief and anguish over the loss of precious human lives” in the attack.

“No one will be allowed to disturb the peace in the province that has been restored thanks to the countless sacrifices by the security forces, police and the people of Balochistan,” he said in a statement.

Lawyers targeted

Lawyers have been targeted several times in the last few months in Balochistan.

  • A lawyer, Jahanzeb Alvi, was shot dead by unknown armed men in the Brewery road area of Quetta last week on Aug 3.

  • Advocate Bilal Kasi, who himself was shot dead on the morning of Monday’s blast, had strongly condemned the murder of Advocate Alvi and announced two days’ boycott of courts proceedings.

  • The principal of University of Balochistan’s law college, Barrister Amanullah Achakzai, was also shot dead by unknown assailants on Spini Road here in June.

Balochistan has been experiencing incidents of violence and targeted killings for over a decade. More than 1,400 incidents targeting the minority Shia and Hazara community have taken place in the province during the past 15 years.

The largest province of the country by area, is home to a low-level insurgency by ethnic Baloch separatists. Al Qaeda-linked and sectarian militants also operate in the region. The province shares borders with Afghanistan and Iran.

Facebook safety check

—Facebook
—Facebook

Social networking site Facebook activated its “safety check” feature after the blast in Quetta.

The feature allows people to mark themselves or others ‘safe’ in any incident or catastrophe, and let their loved ones know about their state.

Volunteers use a stretcher to move an injured lawyer after the explosion.— AFP
Volunteers use a stretcher to move an injured lawyer after the explosion.— AFP
Lawyers and local media personnel carry a bed to move the body of a news cameraman after the explosion.— AFP
Lawyers and local media personnel carry a bed to move the body of a news cameraman after the explosion.— AFP

10 dead as blast hits Quetta Civil Hospital after lawyer’s killing

QUETTA: At least 10 people were killed in a loud explosion inside the Civil Hospital here on Monday, Balochistan Home Minister Sarfaraz Bugti confirmed. Over 30 people have been injured in the blast.

“The blast occurred after a number of lawyers and some journalists had gathered at the hospital following the death of the president of the Balochistan Bar Association in a separate shooting incident early this morning,” said Balochistan Home Secretary Akbar Harifal.


What we know so far

  • Loud blast heard in Quetta’s Civil Hospital
  • At least 10 people killed, over 30 injured
  • Blast followed killing of senior lawyer in Quetta
  • Most of the injured are lawyers

—DawnNews
—DawnNews(Curtsy )

The explosion took place soon after lawyers arrived at the Civil Hospital when the body of their colleague Advocate Bilal Anwar Kasi was brought in.

Several lawyers including the former president of Balochistan Bar Association Baaz Mohammad Kakar were reported injured in the explosion and aerial firing could still be heard at the premises.

TV reports said people were attempting to exit the hospital in a state of chaos.

Journalists present at the premises also came in the line of fire and the cameraman for NNP was severely injured in the explosion. Shahzad Khan, a cameraman associated with Aaj TV, was reportedly killed in the blast.

—DawnNews.
—DawnNews(Curtsy).

Police surrounded the hospital and cordoned off the area after the blast.

An emergency has been declared in hospitals across Quetta and several injured are being shifted to these for treatment.

“This was a security lapse and i am having this personally investigated,” Bugti told NNP.

He said it was too early to determine the nature of the blast, adding that the hospital had not received any threats in the past.

Lawyers targeted

Lawyers have been targeted several times in the past several months in Balochistan.

A lawyer, Jahanzeb Alvi, was shot dead by unknown armed men in the Brewery road area last week on Aug 3.

Advocate Bilal Kasi, who himself was shot dead today, had strongly condemned the murder of Advocate Alvi and announced two days’ boycott of courts proceedings.

The principal of University of Balochistan’s law college, Barrister Amanullah Achakzai, was also shot dead by unknown assailants on Spini Road here in June.

Balochistan has been experiencing incident violence and targeted killings since more than a decade. More than 1,400 incidents targeting the minority Shia and Hazara community have taken place in the province during the past 15 years.

The largest province of the country by area, is home to a low-level insurgency by ethnic Baloch separatists. Al Qaeda-linked and sectarian militants also operate in the region.

The province shares borders with Afghanistan and Iran.


This is a developing story that is being updated as the situation evolves. Initial reports in the media can sometimes be inaccurate. We will strive to ensure timeliness and accuracy by relying on credible sources such as qualified authorities and our staff reporters.

Quetta blast: Terror case registered against unidentified men

QUETTA: Case of the bomb blast on Quetta’s Ispahani road was registered against unidentified men today.

The case was registered in the presence of Station House Officer (SHO) Tanzeem Hussain Shah, in Sadar Police Station.

Various sections including anti-terrorism act, communication damage, and murder attempt have been added in the case.

The blast that occurred a day before injured five people including a woman and also damaged a Frontier Corps (FC) vehicle.

Closer, messier Senate emerges after polls

ISLAMABAD: All the hullabaloo and mudslinging over Thursday’s Senate elections did not disturb the expected outcome as the ruling PML-N and main opposition PPP got almost equal representation in the upper house of the parliament over the next three years.

54f9294e74ecaWith the Imran Khan-led PTI entering the Senate for the first time in its history, the return of the nationalist Balochistan National Party (Mengal) and the Jamaat-i-Islami (JI) to the upper house of the parliament are other significant outcomes from the Senate elections.

The estranged BNP-M is being represented in the Senate after seven years. In 2008, its outspoken Senator Sanaullah Baloch had tendered his resignation in protest over the alleged anti-Balochistan policies of the then federal government and the military operation in the province during the army-led civilian set-up of Gen Pervez Musharraf.


PML-N, PPP remain neck-and-neck; race for chairman, deputy chairman posts now wide open


The JI, which lost representation in the upper house due to its decision to boycott the 2008 general elections, will be returning to the Senate after three years. The party will be represented by none other than its chief Sirajul Haq, who won a general seat from KP.

According to unofficial results, the PML-N has won the highest number of seats with 18 out of the 48 contested on Thursday, followed by eight by the PPP, six by the PTI and four by the Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM).

Also read: Senate election and its set of controversies

Despite winning the most seats, the PML-N will continue to remain a minority government in the Senate with 26 senators as the PPP has maintained its position as the single largest party with 27 senators. This means that the race for the coveted slots of chairman and deputy chairman will be hotly contested and the role of smaller parties cannot be underestimated.

As expected, the PML-N swept the polls in Punjab, winning all 11 seats, including seven general, and two each reserved for technocrats and women. Similarly, despite fielding “outsiders”, the PML-N bagged both Senate seats from Islamabad as well. Besides, the party has managed to win three seats from Balochistan and two from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Thanks to an understanding with the PPP, the MQM secured four seats and managed to improve its strength in the Senate from seven members to eight.

Due to a controversy arising out of the government’s move to issue a presidential order changing the voting procedure for Fata members hours before polling, elections on four Fata seats could not take place on Thursday.

The polling process generally remained normal and peaceful in all legislatures except in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly, where polling was suspended for more than five hours when opposition members protested over the conduct of polling staff and pointed out violations of the electoral code of conduct by members of the treasury benches.

Explore: Faced with failure in Fata, PML-N spoilt Senate race?

At one point, opposition members spoke of a boycott of the Senate elections, but later agreed to resume the voting process after negotiations with the ruling PTI. Polling, which was suspended at 10:30am, resumed at around 4.15pm and continued until 11pm. During this time, 123 MPAs out of a total 124, cast their votes. PTI’s Javed Nasim was the only MPA who could not cast his vote after his expulsion from the party for violating party discipline by proposing an independent candidate, Waqar Ahmed Khan.

A total of 289 of 330 MNAs were eligible to cast their votes in the National Assembly, where polling was held to elect one member on a general seat and the one on a seat reserved for women.

In Sindh, 163 legislators polled their votes out of a total 167 members.

Punjab

The winners on general seats from Punjab include at least two ‘outsiders’ — PML-N Vice President Sindh Saleem Zia and PML-N Sindh Secretary General Syed Nehal Hashmi. Other winners on general seats include Federal Information Minis­ter Pervez Rashid, Environ­ment Minister Mushahid­ullah Khan, retired Lt-Gen Abdul Qayyum, Chaudhry Tanvir Khan and Ghous Mohammad Khan Niazi.

Supporters of PML-N celebrate the victory of Najma Hameed in Senate election outside Punjab Assembly. -  INP
Supporters of PML-N celebrate the victory of Najma Hameed in Senate election outside Punjab Assembly. – INP

PML-N Chairman and current Leader of the House in the Senate Raja Zafarul Haq and Prof Sajid Mir have won the two seats reserved for technocrats while the two seats reserved for women went to Begum Najma Hameed and Ayesha Raza Farooq.

Federal capital

The PML-N also won both seats from the federal capital. Iqbal Zafar Jhagra from Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and Raheela Magsi from Sindh were elected against the general and reserved seat for women from Islamabad, respectively. Ms Magsi had entered the race at the eleventh hour after getting permission from the Islamabad High Court to contest the elections after the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) rejected her papers on a plea by PPP candidate Nargis Faiz Malik.

Sindh

The PPP won five of the seven general seats in Sindh, while the remaining two went to the MQM. Those who emerged victorious include former interior minister Rehman Malik, former finance minister Saleem Mandwiwala, Islamuddin Sheikh, Abdul Latif Ansari and Gyan Chand of the PPP and Khushbakht Shujaat and Mian Mohammad Atteq Sheikh of the MQM.

Former chairman of Senate, Farooq Naek (PPP), and Barrister Mohammad Ali Saif (MQM) had already been elected unopposed against two reserved seats for technocrats. Similarly, Sassui Palejo (PPP) and Nighat Mirza (MQM) had also been elected unopposed against two reserved seats for women.

Balochistan

All three ruling coalition partners – the PML-N, the PkMAP and NP – bagged three seats each out of the 12 seats contested in Balochistan. Besides them, JUI-F, BNP-M and an independent secured one seat each.

President PML-N Nawab Sanaullah Zehri, PML-Q Parliamentary Leader Sheikh Jaffar Khan Mandukhel and Balochistan Provincial Assembly Opposition Leader Maulana Abdul Wase in a group photo with newly elected senators after the Senate elections. - Online
President PML-N Nawab Sanaullah Zehri, PML-Q Parliamentary Leader Sheikh Jaffar Khan Mandukhel and Balochistan Provincial Assembly Opposition Leader Maulana Abdul Wase in a group photo with newly elected senators after the Senate elections. – Online

The winners on seven general seats are Mir Nematullah Zehri (PML-N), Hasil Bizenjo (NP), Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri (JUI-F), Jahanzeb Jamali Dini (BNP-M), Muhammad Usman and Sardar Azam Khan (PkMAP) and Muhammad Yousuf Badini (IND).

The two women seats were won by Kalsoom Parveen of the PML-N and Gul Bushara of the PkMAP whereas Shahbaz Durrani of the PML-N and Mir Kabir of the NP have secured the technocrats seats.

Dr Ashok Kumar of the NP has won the only seat reserved for the minorities.

Also read: Utter chaos

The following table depicts complete picture of the new Senate after Thursday’s elections

Woman, two children killed in blast caused by gas leakage

QUETTA: A woman and her two children were killed and three children suffered burn injuries in two explosions caused by gas leak in Marriabad area on Monday.

54f50c5825524Police said gas accumulated in two houses in Nasirabad and Nadirabad localities of Marriabad area and caused huge blasts.

The deaths were reported from a Nasirabad house where a woman tried to light a gas heater, causing the blast. She along with her two children died, police said.

The other blast occurred in a house at Nadirabad, injuring three children.

The two houses were partially damaged and windowpanes of nearby buildings smashed by the impact of the blasts.

Police shifted the injured to the Benazir Bhutto Shaheed Hospital in Marriabad area.

Personnel of bomb disposal squad collected evidence from the two places and confirmed that the gas leak had caused the explosions.

However, residents of the area claimed it was a rocket attack. They said rockets fired from an unknown destination had hit the houses.

“How can two blasts of the same nature occur in two houses at the same time,” asked Rehmatullah, a resident of the area.