by Imtiaz Ali
KARACHI: Police have launched investigations into the Quaidabad bomb blast, which killed two teenage boys and wounded 12 other persons on Friday night, and law enforcers said that their assessment suggested involvement of sub-nationalist groups in the deadly incident, it emerged on Saturday.
Two teenagers were killed and 12 other persons, mostly vendors, sustained injuries when a bomb planted under a pushcart went off on Friday night near the Quaidabad flyover.
The dead and wounded were shifted to the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre.
Ten of the injured persons were discharged after first aid, said Dr Seemin Jamali, executive director of the JPMC.
Two seriously injured persons were admitted for treatment. One of them had sustained injuries in the head, but his condition was improving. Another injured person’s leg was amputated to save his life. He was badly injured in the blast and was shifted to the intensive care unit of the hospital, added Dr Jamali.
The funeral of one of the dead teenagers, Ali Hasan, was held in the city on Saturday, which was attended by politicians and officials. He was stated to be the only brother of seven sisters.
Police’s Counter-Terrorism Department has taken over investigations from the local police and launched their own probe into it.
Sources familiar with the preliminary investigations of the case told Dawn that the modus operandi and type of explosive material indicated the involvement of sub-nationalist groups, who may be belonging to Sindh or Balochistan.
Regarding a possible motive for the blast, a security official on condition of anonymity told Dawn that it had been observed that the Sindhi or Baloch sub-nationalist groups tended to carry out terror acts “to make their presence felt” whenever an important day or event was expected to arrive.
The sources said that it was a remote-controlled device, weighing around two kilograms.
The law enforcers found another improvised explosive device at the crime scene, which was defused by the police’s Bomb Disposal Squad officials. It also weighed around two kilograms and was also a remote-controlled device.
The security official said they suspected that another bomb was planted to cause maximum damage to human life when law enforcers were supposed to arrive there to inspect the place, but it was defused on time by the bomb experts.
‘A conspiracy to sabotage peace’
Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah on Saturday visited the JPMC and inquired about the health of the persons injured in the Quaidabad blast. He directed the hospital administration to provide proper health facilities to the wounded.
Talking to the media on the occasion, Mr Shah said such incidents were a conspiracy to disturb the peace. He said he had sought an immediate report from Inspector General of Police Dr Syed Kaleem Imam.
Answering a question about lack of proper forensic laboratory in Sindh, Mr Shah said he hoped that such a forensic lab would be established here soon.
He said the Sindh government was assessing why Punjab’s forensic lab leaked information to the media about findings of the samples collected from the home of two minor brothers who died from eating “poisonous food” in the city last week.
He said at this stage, it would be premature to comment on the death of two minor brothers till a complete report is received.
The CM expressed his concern about the prime minister’s reported statement of taking U-turns and apprehended that it might adversely affect foreign investment in the country.
Meanwhile, IGP Imam praised the 12 BDS and CTD officials who defused another bomb near the Quaidabad flyover on Friday night and announced Rs50,000 for each official.
While expressing his regrets over the loss of two lives and injuries to others, the police chief vowed that the culprits would be caught soon.