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Pakistan: At least 100 dead, scores injured in suicide attack at Lal Shahbaz Qalandar shrine, IS claims responsibility

The Death Toll From Attack At Lal Shahbaz Qalandar's Shrine Now Stands At Around 100, Karachi Post Quoted Sehwan DSP As Saying.

PTI | Updated on: 17 Feb 2017, 11:36:55 AM
A file photo of Sufi shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar in Sindh province, Pakistan. (ANI/Twitter)


Nearly 100 people were killed and dozens injured on Thursday when an Islamic State (IS) suicide bomber blew himself up inside the crowded shrine of revered Sufi Lal Shahbaz Qalandar in Sehwan town, some 200 kms northeast of Karachi, in a string of deadly blasts this week in Pakistan. 

The bomber entered the shrine through its golden gate and blew himself up near the site where the ritual of sufi dance 'Dhamal' was taking place. 

"He first threw a grenade to cause panic and then blew himself up," SSP Jamshoro Tariq Wilayat said. 

Sehwan police station SHO Rasool Baksh told reporters that around 100 people, including women and children, have been killed in the suicide bomb attack. 

Hundreds of devotees were present inside the premises of the vast mausoleum of the saint at the time of blast.

Read | At least 2 people killed, 18 injured in a suicide attack in Hayatabad area of Peshawar in Pakistan

Faisal Edhi of the Edhi foundation confirmed they have shifted 60 bodies to hospitals in Hyderabad and Jamshoro. 

The IS claimed responsibility for the attack on their Aamaq news agency, saying a suicide bomber had targeted a "Shiite gathering" at the shrine in Sindh. 

Also Read: Terrorist attack in Pak: Know why 'Jhulelal's Dargah' was revered by many

Commissioner Hyderabad Kazi Shahid said since the shrine was located in a remote area, some 130 kms from Hyderabad, ambulances and vehicles and medical teams were being sent from Hyderabad, Jamshoro, Moro, Dadu and Nawabshah to the blast site to take care of the injured and move the bodies. 

"Emergency has been declared at hospitals in these places and rescue operations have started," he said. 

Sindh chief minister Syed Murad Ali Shah said that the Pakistan army had been requested to provide night flying helicopters to shift the dead and injured. 

"Yes it is a tragic incident and because the shrine is away from a major city there have been problems in providing rescue operations," he said. 

The army said a C130 aircraft will be used to lift the injured from Nawabshah. 

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif condemned the attack and urged Pakistan to "stand united". 

Devotees gather at the shrine of the revered Sufi saint every Thursday to participate in a dhamaal and prayers. 

Television channels reported that dead bodies and injured were lying inside the shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar, a Sufi philosopher-poet of present-day Afghanistan and Pakistan.

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First Published : 16 Feb 2017, 08:37:00 PM

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