Deadly bomb blast at Sufi shrine in Lahore
- Author: Tracy Klein May 09, 2019,
May 09, 2019, 0:49
He added the death toll could rise.
Footage from the scene showed a charred vehicle surrounded by debris and roped off by police and rescue workers.
So far, no group has said it carried out the attack.
The bomb exploded near security forces guarding the shrine.
A police investigation has been launched as access to the shrine has been blocked.
"The rescue operation at the site of the blast has been completed". Entry to the Data Darbar was sealed in the aftermath of the blast.
A police official, while talking to media said their teams are working on evaluating the incident. The IGP said police would share their findings once they conclude their probe.
Among the dead are police officers, a security guard and a civilian.
"We had general threats, but nothing specific against Data Darbar".
"Police was the prime target in this attack. Ball bearings were also used in the attack", she told reporters.
The chief minister has asked IG Punjab to submit a report on the incident. He was briefed at the headquarters and said that he has been monitoring the situation. He directed authorities to provide the best possible medical treatment to those injured.
PML-N President Shahbaz Sharif and Awami National Party General Secretary Ameer Hoti both condemned the attack.
Raja Basharat, Punjab law minister, said it would be premature to decide whether it was a suicide blast. "The government and law enforcement agencies should be anxious about such incidents of terrorism", Hoti said.
In Pakistan, Data Darbar is one of the most revered Sufi shrines and is built around the grave of Sufi saint Abul Hassan Ali Hajveri, Lahore's patron saint.
Pakistani security personnel surround a damaged police van in Lahore, Pakistan, Wednesday, May 8, 2019.
A Pakistani Taliban faction claimed responsibility for the blast.