Peshawar — Nineteen people have reportedly been killed and 35 injured in a suicide blast at a corner meeting of Awami National Party (ANP) at Yaka Toot in Peshawar on Tuesday night.
Barrister Haroon Bilour, son of Bashir Bilour Shaheed and candidate of PK-78 constitution has also been martyred in the blast.
Eyewitnesses told the Tribal Post, Haroon arrived at the meeting was being welcomed when the suicide bomber targeted him.
Peshawar Capital City Police Officer (CCPO) Qazi Jameel told media-persons that more than 30 people were injured in the explosion, and shifted to the hospital.
He did not confirm the nature of the blast, however, the eyewitness ANP workers said that a suicide bomber blew himself when Bilour entered the compound where the meeting was being held.
The casualties were driven to the Lady Reading Hospital (LRH) where medics confirmed the death toll. Bilour suffered serious injuries and was shifted to the hospital where he succumbed to his wounds.
Hundreds of the ANP supporters gathered outside the hospital shouting slogans against the government for its failure to provide security to their leaders.
Haroon’s uncle Ilyas Bilour said they had not received any threat in advance.
ANP leader Iftikhar Hussain said “ANP will take a decision about the participation in election after his funeral. It is unfortunate that not enough security had been provided to us.”
It is pertinent to mention here that Bashir Ahmed Bilour, Haroon’s father a senior ANP figure was also martyred in a suicide blast in Peshawar in 2012.
ANP has governed KP from 2008 to 2013. The party has been a continual target of the terrorist groups like Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) which killed hundreds of the ANP leaders and workers until now.
Pakistan Tahreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan condemned the attack and demanded for proper security to the political leaders during the election campaigns.
Sad to learn of Haroon Bilour and 2 other ANP workers deaths and strongly condemn the terrorist attack at the ANP corner mtg in Peshawar. All political parties and their candidates must be provided proper security during their election campaigns by the State.
— Imran Khan (@ImranKhanPTI) July 10, 2018
Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) president and former Chief Minister Punjab also expressed his greinces and said that Election Commission of Pakistan must provide security to politicians.
Shocking news from Peshawar: Grieved to learn about shahadat of Haroon Bilour. Strongly condemn this barbaric act of terrorism on a public meeting. Its govt & ECP's responsibility 2 provide fool-proof security 2 political parties leaders. My condolences to bereaved families & ANP
— Shehbaz Sharif (@CMShehbaz) July 10, 2018
Mian Iftikhar Hussain said the funeral prayers of Haroon Bilour will be offered on Wednesday at 5 PM at Wazir Bagh in Peshawar.