At least 62 people, including women and children, were killed and over 100 wounded, some of them critically, in a massive explosion at the shrine of Shah Noorani in the Khuzdar district of Balochistan, some 200 kilometers north of Karachi on Saturday evening, police and Balochistan government officials.
The Islamic State (IS) group claimed responsibility for the attack via Amaq, its affiliated news agency.
Following the blast, local people at the shrine evacuated the dead and injured on self-help basis and shifted them to nearby clinics while ambulances with doctors and paramedics from the Hub Tehsil of Lasbella district, Karachi and even from Quetta were dispatched to the Shah Noorani shrine to bring the dead and injured to hospitals in Hub and Karachi.
Hundreds of people, including women and children from entire Karachi and interior of Sindh, visit the Shah Noorani shrine in the Khuzdar district and on Saturday hundreds of devotees were present at the shrine while women had started the dhamaal (ritual dance) when a massive explosion killed dozens of them on the spot and injured scores of others, police officials said.
Emergency was declared at the Civil, Jinnah Postgraduate, Abbasi Shaheed and PNS Shifa Hospitals in Karachi, Jam Ghulam Qadir Hospital in Hub and nearby hospitals. But majority of the injured were rushed to the Civil Hospital, Karachi, due to lack of health facilities, trained and qualified surgeons and paramedics at hospitals in Hub, Lasbella and Khuzdar districts of Balochistan.
Following the blast, the Pakistan Army, Sindh Rangers and Pakistan Navy dispatched their medical teams along with soldiers to treat the badly injured patients on the site of the incident while over 80 ambulances with medical supplies were sent from the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Center (JPMC), Civil Hospital, Karachi, and other hospitals from Karachi.
The badly-injured persons started arriving at the Civil Hospital, Karachi, at around 10:45 pm on Saturday night, health officials at the Civil Hospital Karachi’s Trauma Center said, adding that most of the patients were critically injured and were being operated upon by the medical teams to save their lives.
Moving scenes were witnessed at the Jam Ghulam Qadir Hospital in Hub and Civil Hospital, Karachi, where injured and dead bodies of devotees from the Shah Noorani shrine were brought as people including men, women and children were seen holding their Computerized National Identity Cards (CNICs) for the identification of their loved ones.