Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) interim Chief Minister Azam Khan on Tuesday rubbished the growing perception of delay in polls due to dilapidated security conditions in the province, which intensified after the horrific terror incident in the Peshawar mosque Monday.
As many as 100 lives were claimed and 200 were left injured when a suicide bomber blew himself up inside a mosque in the Police Lines area during Zohr prayer on Monday.
Last week, KP Governor Ghulam Ali hinted that the polls might be delayed and the election date would be announced after a comprehensive review by law enforcement agencies.
He was flanked by provincial police chief Moazzam Jah Ansari.
When asked whether elections could be postponed due to Monday's terrorism, CM Khan, addressing a press briefing in Peshawar today, said it had nothing to do with polls. "Terror has been frequenting the country since long before the announcement of elections," the chief minister said.
Khan noted that terror incidents are taking place in KP's South — DI Khan, Lakki Marwat, and Tank areas.
In reply to another question, Khan said: "My message to the people is to keep their spirits high. Such things have been happening here for the last 40 years, this is not a new thing."
He said that due to the Afghan war, they were facing the scourge of terrorism in ex-Fata and KP. "We should pray to God to [give us the strength to] fight this menace."
In the same press conference, KP Inspector-General of Police Ansari said that about 10-12 kilogrammes of explosives were used in the blast.
He said that it was a security lapse and investigation was underway to ascertain the facts. "We are checking one-month's CCTV footage and tracking the facilitators of the bomber," he added.
The provincial police chief said that a joint investigation team (JIT) had been notified and the probe would clear everything soon. Those responsible would be identified and brought to the book, he added.
"The attacker might have entered the premises as a guest," the top policeman sad adding, "Tthe banned Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) has denied responsibility for the attack last night".
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