A gun-and-bomb attack on a Shia mosque during Friday congregation in Koocha Risaldar area of Peshawar on Friday, reported News Media.
So far, 57 people, including an Imam and two policemen, were martyred and 195 others sustained severe injuries. Earlier, Interior Minister Sheikh Rasheed had confirmed that over 40 people were martyred and more than 60 injured in the terrorist attack.
Rescue officials had also told the media that rescue operation were underway and the injured had been shifted to Lady Reading Hospital Peshawar.
According to spokesman of Lady Reading Hospital, Muhammad Asim Khan “We have declared an emergency at the hospital,” and confirming the death toll may rise.
SSP Operations Haroon Al-Rasheed said that investigations is underway and initial investigations shows that the blast to be a suicide.
“There were two security personnel deputed at the entrance of the mosque. One of them died during the exchange of fire while the other is seriously injured.”
Capital City Police Officer (CCPO Peshawar) Muhammad Ijaz Khan said before the explosion, two armed terrorists tried to enter into the mosque but the policemen deployed there challenged them. In the exchange of gun shots, one police officer was martyred while another was injured. He also succumbed to his injuries later.
The CCPO said that the bomb exploded in the mosque after attack on police officials.
He also stated that the police had reached the blast site and evidence had also been collected.
“It is too early to say anything about motive behind the blast. Media will be informed about latest developments,” he added.
Ambulances rushed through congested narrow streets carrying the wounded to Lady Reading Hospital. “10 injured are in critical condition,” according to a hospital spokesperson.
No one immediately claimed responsibility for the blast, but both the Islamic State group and a TTP had carried out similar attacks in the past.
According to eye witness, Shayan Haider, was preparing to enter the mosque when a powerful explosion threw him to the street. “I opened my eyes and there was dust and bodies everywhere,” he said.
KP government Spokesman, Barrister Muhammad Ali Saif said that security was provided to mosques as a general rule. He maintained that the administration had adopted security measures at the mosque as well, adding that such measures were always ensured during congregation prayers on Fridays.
“Those martyred and injured in the attack will be given monetary assistance under the government’s special package,” he added.
Prime Minister Imran Khan condemned the blast. He ordered immediate steps for medical aid to the injured and also sought a report on the incident.
Former president Asif Ali Zardari also condemned the Peshawar’s mosque blast and said,
“Had the terrorists’ nurseries been eliminated, this incident would not have taken place”.
He added that terrorists were the enemies of the country and the nation, and they were needed to be crushed as an enemy.
He prayed for early recovery of the injured and stressed for implementing the National Action Plan. He also sought stern action against the terrorists involved in the bomb blast and their facilitators.