Roadside blast kills bomb disposal team in Peshawar


PESHAWAR – At least four personnel of bomb disposal unit (BDU) were killed and two others injured when a remote-controlled explosive device targeted their vehicle in Badhabera area in the outskirt of Peshawar on Monday. Police sources said the incident took place in the wee hour of Monday when bomb disposal unit was on its way to examine a low intensity blast site. As police mobile arrived at the blast site, suddenly another remote-controlled device exploded with a bang. The blast killed in-charge bomb disposal squad Abdul Haq, head constable Ameenul Haq, constable Imtiaz and a passerby Nazirul Haq while driver Kashif sustained serious injuries. Edhi ambulances and Rescue 1122 staff shifted the injured to Lady Reading Hospital where one of the injured Nazirul Haq succumbed to his injuries while another passerby was stated to be stable.
Soon after the incident police rushed to the site and cordoned off the area. During search operation another bomb was found and defused. A search operation was underway to apprehend the suspected militants.
BDU Assistant Inspector General (AIG) Shafqat Malik said their team was going to inspect the site of a blast in a motorcycle workshop which occurred last night when a road side bomb exploded, killing three personnel on the spot.
“It is a great loss but our morale is high and BDU will continue performing its duty in the on-going war on terror,” Malik said, adding that they only had 34 qualified and trained employees in the province who were overburdened. He said efforts were on to increase the number of personnel and ensure their presence in all 25 districts in the province.
Talking to The Nation, a police official seeking anonymity, said the incident occurred due to negligence of the high-ups as despite repeated requests, AIG Shafqat Malik had not given the jammer vehicle to personnel defusing bombs.
He said if they had jammer car in such sensitive areas, there would have been no casualties. He said inspector Hukam Khan, sub-inspector Lal Mast Khan and now Abdul Haq had been martyred due to negligence of police high-ups as they did not direct him to use security measures for safety.
He said majority of the experienced men of BDU had been martyred and now police were facing severe dearth of such dedicated officers to cope with bomb disposal process.
He appealed to Inspector General of Police Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Nasir Durrani to take up the issue seriously and ensure bulletproof vehicles along with jammers for the personnel of bomb disposal squad.
Several honest officers of the BDU have so far sacrificed their lives in the line of duty. Prominent among them are Hukam Khan, Lal Mast Khan and Abdul Haq.