Passers-by hurt as bomb targets police van
PESHAWAR, Jan 31: Eleven passers-by were injured and several vehicles and shops were damaged when a bomb exploded inside a police van at the busy Firdous Chowk here on Thursday.
The blast took place when a police party, led by Sub-inspector Imran Dil Khan, parked the van at Firdous Chowk during routine patrolling of the area. “The sub-inspector and his driver were sitting in the front seat while the two guards were standing at a distance from the van but they remained unhurt miraculously,” police sources said.
A student identified as Shoaib Ali Khan was also the injured. He was on his way to college when fell victim to the blast, sources said.
The other injured include Mohammad Masroof, Riaz, Misbahullah, Zabihullah, Irshad, Abdul Qadir, Hayat, Ziaul Haq and Yahya.
The injured were rushed to Lady Reading Hospital for treatment. A hospital source said that they were in stable condition.
According to bomb disposal squad about 500 grams explosives and ball bearings were used in the blast. “It was a magnet bomb and its main target was police,” an official said.
City Circle SP Khalid Mehmood Hamdani told journalists that it was a low intensity bomb and its target was Hashtnagri police but they escaped miraculously.
“We have beefed up security in the city and plugged all the entry points by deploying policemen there to check suspected elements. That’s why terrorists target police,” he said.
The blast also damaged several shops and vehicles in the area.
A source said that the policemen left the van outside Jalil Kababi Hotel and went inside another restaurant for breakfast when the blast took place.
The source said that policemen were not present in the van at the time of blast and all the wounded people were passers-by. The area was cordoned off by heavy contingent of police after the incident.
Meanwhile, police claimed to have arrested 74 outlaws during raids in parts of the district on Thursday and recovered arms and ammunitions from their possessions.