Balochistan: Grenade attacks on NP election office injures two

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QUETTA: In the run-up to the nationwide polls, unidentified miscreants carried out grenade attacks on the election offices of the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) and the National Party (NP) in Balochistan on Sunday.

A disturbing trend emerges with violence infiltrating the political sphere. Politicians find themselves in the crosshairs, subjected to threats and attacks ahead of the February 8 elections.

The grenade blasts raise alarm bells over the security measures ahead of the general polls next month and election campaigns of all political parties are in full swing across the country.

Unknown men lobbed a grenade at the nationalist party’s — NP — election office in Mastung district, leaving two persons wounded following its explosion at Muhammad Shahi Road, police said, noting that the attackers managed to flee from the scene.

The injured persons were immediately shifted to the hospital, police said. The police force launched a search operation in the area to catch the culprits.

The NP spokesperson condemned the “cowardly” grenade attack at his party’s election office, adding that they would not surrender due to such “cowardly acts” and further expedite the electioneering.

The party also demanded the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) to replace the superintendent police (SP) besides taking strict action against the local authorities over the security failure, otherwise, the party reserves the right to register a strong protest.

In a separate incident, unidentified miscreants targeted a PPP election office via a hand grenade in the Qalat district. In the incident that took place in the Mangocher area today, no casualty was reported.

According to Levies, the grenade explosion occurred near a closed PPP election office established in Mangocher market.

Heavy contingents of law enforcement agencies deployed in the area and commenced a search operation.

On Thursday, a policeman was martyred in an armed attack carried out by unidentified men on the election commission’s- regional office in Turbat. Police repulsed the attack following a gunfight with the assailants who attempted to enter the ECP’s office.

During the encounter, a police personnel, identified as Namrooz, laid down his life in the line of duty and foiled the militants’ plot.

After failing to enter the ECP office, the armed men lobbed a hand grenade into the office. Fortunately, no one was injured in the explosion.

A convoy of the NP had also come under attack last Sunday in Kech district’s Dasht Town, fortunately, there were no casualties as confirmed by officials.

The attacks come as the country has witnessed a significant surge in terrorist attacks with the last year’s terror-related casualties reaching a six-year high with more than 1,500 civilians, security forces, and militants killed, according to the Islamabad-based Center for Research and Security Studies (CRSS).

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