Quetta on high alert as city mourns Police Training College attack

QUETTA- Provincial metropolis was in the grip of gloom after 70 police cadets including seven officials and soldiers were killed in a dastardly attack on the hostels of Police Training College located on Saryab Road, 10 kilometres out of the heart of the capital city. This main city road had in the past been scene of major terrorist attacks killing scores of innocent people.

Since last night Quetta was placed under high security alert with police, FC and army contingents engaged in carrying out operation to clear the hostels from the attackers and patrolling city's major roads to nab any fleeing terrorist. Ambulances remained shuttling between the scene of the tragedy and hospitals located in different parts of the city.

Emergency is still effective in all hospitals where around 150 injured are undergoing various stages of treatment. Units of FC and army and contingent have been deployed in and outside all four major hospitals. Larger number of injured, some of them critically were housed in Civil Hospital. Leaves and weekly of days of medical and para-medical staff have been cancelled.

Long queues of relatives of those under treatment were seen including those who had volunteered  to donate blood for injured police cadets. Provincial Health Minister informed the media that there was no shortage of blood. He himself donated a pint of blood at the Civil Hospital Blood Bank.

The Namaz-e-Janaza for Shaheed cadets and security officials were offered this afternoon with the Prime Minister and the Army Chief along with their comrades and civilian officials attending.

The hostels and Police Training Centre were still closed to general public despite having been declared cleared. The most tragic fact is that this Centre has been the scene of terrorist attacks twice before in the past. The Inspector General of Police had, according to media report, proposed the provincial government to replace the mud wall around the Centre with brick wall but it was not heeded to for unknown reasons. 

It may be worth mentioning that Justice Faiz Isa of the Supreme Court was in Quetta today as head of the inquiry commission probing the Civil Hospital tragedy killing the entire cream of lawyer community. The residents of Quetta had hardly survived the tragedy of Civil Hospital blast that bloody Tuesday has added to their miseries.

Vehicles remained plying on the city roads since the authorities did not closed educational institutions and government offices. Shopping centres remained thronged by shoppers painting a picture as if all is well. When asked a resident returning with hanging shopping bags quipped: " We are now immune to such attacks and blasts. No one is doing nothing to stop this madness. Top civil and military leaders come create hue and cry and yet the result is zero. This inhuman activity apparently has no end".

Quetta Airport today witnessed massive activity due to arrival of the army chief and the Prime Minister. The entire route from airport to the city was littered with police. FC and Army personnel deployed for security. Check posts located at least on more that 50 sensitive areas were beefed up.

The heroics of Capt Rooullah Shaheed were on the lips of all those who came to know of what actually happened inside the hostel. One injured soldier in the Civil Hospital talked about him saying: "Salute to Capt Rooh Ullah who came to rescue the Police Training Centre Quetta. He was a brave officer and was leading his unit to rescue those made hostage by the attackers. As he fired an attacker in the head, he blew himself that hit the Capt".

ePaper - Nawaiwaqt