At least a dozen people were feared killed and over 100 injured in three blasts that disrupted ‘Youm-e-Ali' — the Shia procession to mark the martyrdom of Hazrat Ali in Lahore — on Wednesday evening. The suicide bomb attacks were followed by mob ire on the police resulting in stone pelting and torching of vehicles of security personnel.
The first two blasts took place near Karbala Gamay Shah where the procession was headed. As panic-stricken members ran away from the scene, a suicide bomber detonated himself at Bhatti Chowk in the vicinity claiming the maximum number of lives and leaving many injured.
Even as the injured were being rushed to hospitals, angry participants in the procession turned their anger at the police. This led to reports of violence breaking out in nearby areas. The attacks took place despite security being strengthened as always for this procession.
Lahore Commissioner Khusro Pervez told reporters that this was a very well-planned and coordinated attack as the suicide bomber — which was the deadliest of the three attacks — managed to penetrate the security cordon in the melee of the initial blasts.
In fact, officials maintained that special attention had been made to secure the procession as sectarian violence — particularly attacks on minority groups of Muslims also — has been on the rise in recent months.