DAGGAR: A local leader of the newly formed Qaumi Watan Party (QWP) and head of an anti-Taliban Amn Lashkar was killed along with four persons in a suicide attack here on Saturday.
Eyewitnesses said Saeed Ahmad Khan, known as Fateh Khan, who was head of the anti-militant peace body in Buner, was driving home from his filling station when a suicide bomber blew himself up close to his vehicle near the District Headquarters Hospital in Daggar, the headquarters of Buner district.
Five persons, including Fateh Khan, were killed and 10 others sustained injuries, two of them critical, in the suicide hit. The vehicle was also destroyed in the explosion.
The police and security forces rushed to the spot and cordoned off the area.
The dead were identified as Fateh Khan and constables Sultan Zeb and Momin Khan and the two passersby were Sardar Ali and Mohammad Saleh Bacha. Some of the injured were identified as Asghar Ali, Mukamil Khan, Sabihullah, Said Nawab, Zeb and the wife of Abdul Jalil.
The injured were taken to the nearby District Headquarters Hospital in Daggar.
One of the injured, whose name could not be known, was referred to the Lady Reading Hospital in Peshawar owing to his critical condition.
A senior police official in Buner said the suicide bomber was on foot and detonated explosives strapped to his body near the car of the QWP leader.
District Police Officer (DPO) Jehanzeb Khan said that Fateh Khan and his three bodyguards were on their way home from the filling station in the main town of Buner when the suicide bomber attacked the car.
He said the head of the pro-government Lashkar, his two bodyguards, and two passersby were killed in the attack.
The DPO said Fateh Khan had raised a Lashkar against the militants in 2009 and expelled them from Buner.
Asif Khan, a nephew of Fateh Khan, told reporters that the district police officer had asked him to restrict movement as there were reports that the militants could attack him.
Provincial Minister for Elementary and Secondary Education Sardar Hussain Babak, Member National Assembly Istiqbal Khan, Member Provincial Assembly Qaiser Wali Khan and others visited the hospital and inquired after the health of the injured and condemned the blast.
Meanwhile, the outlawed Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility for the blast. TTP spokesman Ihsanullah Ihsan called reporters from an undisclosed place and made the claim. “Fateh Khan was our enemy number one. He had killed a number of our colleagues in Buner. Today we are happy as we have eliminated him,” he said.