Mubashir Mushtaq, 19, had left early for college on Monday morning and he was waiting with some friends at R A Bazar, near the General Headquarters of the Pakistan military in Rawalpindi when a suicide bombing killed him and a friend. Two others in the group were injured. The blast took place at 7.50 am and 13 persons including eight Security Forces personnel, three students and two others were killed while 29 were injured.
The blast said to be detonated by a suicide bomber on a bicycle shattered the windows of nearby buildings. R A Bazar or Royal Artillery Bazar is in the proximity of the GHQ, the Armed Forces Institute of Cardiology, the National Logistics Cell, and some depots. This is not the first time it has witnessed a bomb blast.
Mubashir’s father was inconsolable and told media persons that his son was ticked off by the college authorities because he was late and he had decided to leave early today. He never made it to the college. He was the only son after five daughters, he said.
Nausheen Yusuf, a reporter for Geo TV told The Hindu on the phone that the group of four or five young students always went to college together every day on their bicycles and they were waiting for a friend to turn up when the blast occurred. The blast took place in an area less than a km away from the GHQ and close to the local police station and is considered one of the most secure areas in the garrison city.
It comes a day after the Taliban targeted a Frontier Corps convoy killing 20 in Bannu in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Sunday. Some of the injured are critical, according to news reports. Chief of Army staff General Raheel Sharif spoke to the Prime Minister to discuss the security situation.
Police said it was a suicide attack. Chairing a cabinet meeting to discuss the draft National Security Policy, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif said extraordinary measures were needed to deal with extraordinary circumstances.
According to a statement from the Inter Services Public Relations, General Raheel Sharif and a large number of senior military officials and relatives of the victims attended the funeral prayers.