A spokesperson for the Lady Reading Hospital (LRH) reported that the number of deaths from the attack on a mosque in Peshawar’s Police Lines area a day earlier increased to 88 on Tuesday after fresh bodies were found there.
A mosque in Peshawar’s Red Zone was destroyed by an explosion on Friday, killing 59 people—mostly police officers—and injuring over 150 others. The incident was conducted by the banned Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). Later, it grew distant from it.
In a statement issued today, LRH spokesperson Muhammad Asim said that all the deceased persons have been identified, while 57 of those injured were under treatment at the facility.
In total, 157 injured people were brought to the hospital on Monday, he continued, and the majority of them were sent home after receiving medical treatment.
An 18-hour-long rescue operation has been going on at the blast site, according to Rescue 1122 spokesperson Bilal Faizi.
He said, “We are not hopeful of locating any survivors, but this morning we are going to dismantle the last part of the collapsed roof so we may rescue additional dead.”
The nature of the blast yet to be determined
According to a police report made public following the incident, the explosion happened inside the main hall of a mosque with a size of 300 to 350 men that are situated in the Police Lines area.
The Capital City Police, Frontier Reserve Police, Elite Police Force, Counter Terrorism Department, Tele Communication Branch, RRF, and SCU, among other agencies, have their headquarters in the area, according to the statement.
According to the statement, the mosque’s roof collapsed as a result of the explosion, and the Pakistan Army and Rescue 1122 were working to recover any casualties. “A severed head has been recovered from inside the debris. The use of explosives in the incident has been confirmed, while other factors are being evaluated to confirm the nature of the blast,” it said. The report added that suicide bombing could not be “ruled out” and investigation by various teams was underway.
Funeral prayers for police martyrs offered
Separately, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Police Chief Mauzzam Jah Ansari, army commanders, and representatives from the civil administration attended a collective burial prayer for police martyrs that was held late on Monday night in Peshawar’s Police Lines area.
After the prayers, the martyrs’ coffins—lined up in a row and covered with the national flag—were transported to their respective locations for a formal burial.
Speaking at the event, KP IGP Mauzzam Jah Ansari stated that the KP police were always willing to give their lives to safeguard the lives and property of others.
“Being a head of this force, I salute the police officials who lost their lives in the deadly blast. These martyrs are our real heroes and their sacrifices will not go in vain,” he said, adding that the bereaved families would not be left alone and their welfare would be the “prime responsibility” of the KP police.
Day of mourning in KP
In order to condemn the deadliest incident of the year, KP Caretaker Chief Minister Muhammad Azam Khan declared today a day of mourning throughout the province on Monday evening.
He added that throughout the province, “the national flag will be at half-mast,” and that the government understood the families of the martyrs’ sorrow.
Khan also reassured the hurt families that the provincial government will support them during the difficult time following the tragedy.