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 Mosque in Karachi attacked, toll rises to 76

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PostSubject: Mosque in Karachi attacked, toll rises to 76    Thu Aug 05, 2010 1:27 am






KARACHI: A hand-grenade attack inside a North Nazimabad
mosque during prayers on Wednesday night left five people injured as the
daylong violence which included arson attacks and incidents of firing
claimed at least 22 more lives, raising the death toll to 76 in three
days.

Police said at least two men in shirts and jeans and wearing helmets
stopped their motorbike at the Sawari Masjid and Madressah
Shams-ul-Uloom in Block N of North Nazimabad and one of them entered the
premises.

“The Isha prayers were in progress when he hurled a hand grenade
which exploded in the middle of the third row,” said an official at the
Taimuria police station.

“The men escaped, leaving five people injured in the mosque. The
injured were taken to the Abbassi Shaheed Hospital and their condition
was said to be stable, he said.

Allama Maulana Ghulam Ahmed Siyalwi, a religious scholar and senior
member of Jamiat Ulema-i-Pakistan (JUP), was among the injured. He is
the patron-in-chief of the seminary attached to the mosque.

The JUP leadership, meanwhile, ruled out any ethnic motive behind the
attack, but said they suspected it to be a message to the party which
had sought intervention of the army and the chief justice for stopping
the Karachi bloodshed.

“We believe that they are the same terrorists who have vitiated the
city’s peace over the past three days and want to threaten the party,
which only on Tuesday appealed to the army chief and the chief justice
for action,” said Tariq Mahbood of the JUP.

Earlier in the day, panic and fear ruled the city as armed men
carried out attacks in different areas and killed 22 people. The
violence, which was sparked by killing of Muttahida Qaumi Movement MPA
Raza Haider on Monday evening, claimed 76 lives by Wednesday night.

Qasba Colony and neighbouring Orangi Town emerged as the
worst-affected areas where gunmen roamed freely. Police force and
Rangers were nowhere to challenge them. A spokesman for the Edhi
Foundation said the charity’s ambulance shifted more than 50 injured to
different hospitals. Half of them were women and children who were hit
by bullets while they were in their homes.

Similarly, there was no let-up in arson attacks. Three houses in
Qasba Colony were set on fire in the early hours of the day. More than
30 shops of cellphones in Al-Falah of Saddar and a number of carpet
showrooms in North Karachi met the same fate.

Nearly a dozen pushcarts parked on roadside in North Nazimabad and
several shops in a shopping mall in Buffer Zone were also set ablaze.


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