At least nine people were killed and more than a dozen others injured in almost two dozen incidents of violence in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s Dera Ismail Khan district and multiple districts of Balochistan on Thursday.
Five police personnel were martyred and two others sustained injuries when an improvised explosive device (IED) went off within the jurisdiction of Kulachi police station in Dera Ismail Khan.
Officials said that a police vehicle was patrolling the Gara Aslam area of Kulachi for election security when the explosive device went off. “Besides the IED, militants fired at the vehicle,” a police official said, adding the militants escaped when an additional contingent of police reached the site.
Officials also informed that the area was immediately cordoned off following the incident and a search operation was launched. The martyred and injured were shifted to the district headquarters hospital.
According to Farrukh Jamil at the DHQ, the martyred personnel included Sulman Yousaf, Sabir, Israr Ahmad, Ali Muhammad and Driver Zeeshan. The injured were identified as Jan Dost and Mushtaq.
Polling stations in Gwadar, Kech and Panjgur come under grenade, rocket attacks; five cops lose their lives in D.I. Khan IED blast; Khanozai assault toll rises to 30
Meanwhile, Tank police have recovered bodies of three alleged militants believed to be involved in attacks on police and security forces.
Apart from the militant attack in Dera Ismail Khan and the recovery of the militants’ dead bodies, polls in the central, southern and northern districts largely remained peaceful with tightened security arrangements in and outside the polling stations.
Over 20 incidents of violence in Balochistan
In Balochistan, more than two dozen explosions and rocket attacks were reported across the province outside the polling stations, killing four people, including two security personnel and injuring over a dozen.
The grenade attacks and bomb explosions started after people started to arrive at the polling stations to cast their votes in Kech and Gwadar districts of Makran.
A vehicle carrying levies personnel for the security duty for election in the Lejah area of Kharan was also targeted in a blast, killing two levies personnel. Five others were injured, who were immediately shifted to a hospital.
Officials said that the armed men targeted various buildings, including boys and girls schools which were being used as polling stations.
“At least 22 explosions took place in different areas of Kech, Panjgur and Gwadar districts during the polling,” Saeed Ahmed Umrani, the Makran commissioner told Dawn.
Unknown armed men attacked sixteen places in the port city of Gwadar lobbing grenades targeting polling stations. No casualty was reported in these attacks.