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EDITORIAL: Jamaat-e-Islami Emir Sirajul Haq was on his way to a public meeting in Zhob district of Balochistan last Friday when a suicide bomber blew himself up next to his vehicle.

He miraculously remained unhurt but one person lost his life and seven others, including two children, were wounded.

Fortunately, the charge in the blast failed to trigger ball bearings embedded in the explosives which would have caused many more casualties.

The police said a hand-grenade was also recovered from the scene. The JI leader took the attack in his stride and proceeded onwards to address the public gathering, saying “I am not afraid of death. The decision of my life and death rests with Allah.”

His party, however, was not so forgiving. The next day, it staged protest rallies in different towns of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP), shouting slogans against the authorities for not providing security to their leader.

No group has claimed credit for the evil deed. Who may be the perpetrator, nevertheless, is not difficult to figure out as the suicide bombing bears all the hallmarks of TTP (Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan). Besides, in the past this terror outfit has been targeting leaders of religious parties as well.

Back in March 2011, in a similar incident a suicide bomber riding a motorcycle detonated explosives strapped to his body as JUI-F chief Maulana Fazlur Rahman’s convoy was about to enter Swabi in KP where he was to address a public meeting.

Maulana Rahman in his bullet-proof vehicle had stayed safe but 10 people were killed and 20 others injured. The bomber was later identified as a teenage TTP militant from the Khyber tribal region. Before that in 2009, a senior leader of his party, Maulana Muhammad Khan Sherani, was to preside over an event at a seminary in Pishin district of Balochistan when a suicide bomber struck, leaving five people dead.

The Maulana had a narrow escape. Anyone and everyone is a target of these merciless killers. A certain country which makes no secret of its so-called ‘offensive defence strategy’ aimed at destabilising Pakistan, is also said to use TTP for its purposes. There is no use blaming others, however; we need to put our own house in order.

Our brave soldiers are sacrificing their lives in the ongoing military operations against TTP terrorists. Other religious extremist organisations also need to be reined in for the sake of long-term safety and security of this state and society.

As expected, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, Chief Minister of Balochistan Abdul Quddus Bizenjo, PPP Chairman and Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and some others have strongly condemned the attack on JI chief’s convoy. He should also be given proper security cover.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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Ash Chak May 28, 2023 12:05am
" A certain country which makes no secret of its so-called ‘offensive defence strategy’ aimed at destabilising Pakistan, is also said to use TTP for its purposes. " Why don't you just come out and say the country's name. India!
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