A powerful bomb blast near a school bus in Peshawar, capital of Pakistan’s northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, on Monday killed two people, including a student, an official said. “The remote control device exploded when the school bus was passing nearby,” said senior police official Peshawar Liaqat Ali.
“The driver of the bus also died on the spot,” a media report quoted Ali as saying. He added that “two suspects had been arrested from the spot”.
“It is difficult to say that the target of the blast was the school bus because a police mobile van had passed down the road moments before the blast that hit the ill-fated school bus,” he said, hinting that the police vehicle could have been a possible target of terrorists which was missed. The explosion in Mari Bhana area triggered panic.
Bomb disposal squad officials said that “five kg of explosive had been used in the blast”.
“The bus was severely damaged and the windscreen and other structures were badly affected. The school bags and lunch boxes of children, who were taken to hospital, were left in the bus.” Senior minister of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province, Bashir Bilour, said that “the terrorists have now started targeting children which shows that they are desperate”.
“We want to give this message loud and clear that we’ll not budge till we flush out the last terrorist from this part of the world.” The law and order situation in the restive northwestern province of Pakistan, bordering Afghanistan, has deteriorated in the last few years as the country has launched a crackdown against Al Qaeda and Taliban militants, who have resorted to carrying-out terrorist attacks in retaliation.