KARACHI:(APS)Feb 16,2017-At least 100 people were killed and more than 250 injured in a suicide attack on the shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar in Sehwan on Thursday evening.
“Many of the wounded are in critical condition and they will be shifted to Karachi as soon as navy helicopters and C-130 plane reach the nearest airport.”
Deputy Commissioner Munawar Maheesar confirmed the dead included at least four children and 12 women.
The Assistant Superintendent of Police in Sehwan said a suicide bomber entered the shrine through its Golden gate. The attacker blew himself up after throwing a grenade, which failed to explode, he added.
The explosion took place in the area where the dhamaal (a Sufi ritual) was being performed after evening prayers.
A large number of devotees, from different faiths and from across the country, frequent the shrine on Thursdays — a day of spiritual significance in Pakistan’s shrine culture.
Security for shrines was tightened across the province following the attack.
Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, following the attack, directed that immediate assistance be provided to civil authorities. Army contingents were dispatched along with medical personnel. Combined Military Hospital Hyderabad was also alerted to receive casualties.
Air evacuation of the injured was started from Nawabshah airport, the armed forces had tasked a C-130 aircraft and helicopters to aid in the effort. The injured were taken to Karachi and Hyderabad, the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said.
The ISPR added that the armed forces had placed all required resources to facilitate the rescue effort. Pakistan Army and Rangers assisted with rescue efforts at the site.