Pakistani police on Thursday evacuated a busy commercial area here following reports that a bomb had been planted there, hours after unidentified gunmen ambushed an army vehicle and killed a Brigadier and a soldier.
Government offices and commercial establishments at the centre of Sector F-8 were evacuated and the bomb disposal squad was called in to conduct a search following a report that a bomb had been planted in a parking lot, officials said.
Deputy Inspector General of Police (Operations) Bin Yamin dismissed initial reports that police had exchanged fire with a suspected bomber who had entered the district and sessions court complex in the same area.
Bin Yamin said passersby had mistaken the sound of a shop's metal shutter being pulled down for gunfire. He said the report about a bomb being planted in the area was a hoax.
Besides the court complex, the area has several police offices and dozens of shops and commercial establishments. It is located a short distance from the UN food agency's office that was targeted by a suicide bomber two weeks ago.
There was considerable confusion after some witnesses claimed they had seen a bearded man who was wearing what looked like a suicide jacket. They claimed the man ran away after policemen fired at him.
Police used sniffer dogs to scour the area and armed police commandos conducted a thorough search of all buildings.