Bomb in Pakistan kills eight
A bomb in Karachi has exploded, targeting a judge and his security convoy and resulting in the deaths of eight people.
Judge Maqbool Baqar was travelling to the Sindh High Court in the city when a remote controlled bomb attached to a motorcycle was set off next to his vehicle. Seven policemen and the judge’s driver were killed, while the judge remains in a critical condition at hospital.
Judge Baqar has a strong reputation for honesty and is notable for his anti-terrorism stance, as he was involved in policy-making which planned for faster sentencing for terrorists. He was known to be on the hit-list of the well-established militant group Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, although another group, Ehsanullah Ehsan, have claimed responsibility for the attack, claiming that Baqar was promoting the “secular system” – something they do not agree with.
Sindh information minister, Sharjeel Memon, stated: “We had provided maximum security to Maqbool Baqar, and he was wounded in today’s bomb attack on his convoy.”
The attack has gone some way to revealing the true extent of the unrest pervading Pakistan, stemming from the assassination of the first female president Benazir Bhutto in 2007 and the undemocratic takeover of the presidential office by her husband, Asif Ali Zardari, shortly afterwards.
Since then, militant groups have taken advantage of the instability to execute target killings. The common denominator in these killings, which often take the lives of innocent bystanders, has been the dislike of the intruding secular system. Many consider that by trying to eliminate the law-makers and enforcers, these militant groups are paving the way for a takeover.