KARACHI: At least 39 people were injured in an explosion near Bait-ul-Mukarrum Masjid here in Gulshan-e-Iqbal area when the Jamaat-e-Islami (JI) activists gathered for a Kashmir rally on Wednesday.
Police and rescue teams rushed at the scene and shifted the injured persons to the hospital.
At least 39 people were injured in a cracker attack on the JI rally, a spokesperson for the health department said. “One of the injured is in a critical situation,” the spokesperson said and added, “Majority of patients have very minor injuries”.
According to police officials, an unidentified motorcyclist hurled a cracker towards the participants of the rally held to observe Kashmir’s Youm-e-Istehsal. The incident took place near Baitul Mukarram Masjid on main University Road.
This is the second such incident in Karachi on Wednesday, police say. Earlier, some unknown men targeted a state agency in Korangi’s Nasir Jump area.
Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) East Sajid Amir Saduzai said a bomb disposal squad has been called on the site to determine the nature of the blast and sweep the area clear of any possible explosives. He believed that the incident was “not caused by a pre-planted explosive device”.
In a statement, Amir Jamaat-e-Islami Karachi Hafiz Naeem-ur-Rehman strongly condemned the blast and said that the party will announce an “action plan” at a press conference.
Rehman, while addressing the participants of the rally said that it is a failure of the government that such an incident took place. “We do not want strife, we believe in peace. These are Indian agents who carried out the blast,” he said.
The JI leader added that the injured were taken to hospital for treatment.
Sindh government spokesperson Murtaza Wahab condemned the incident and said it was an attempt to disturb the law and order in the metropolis.