LAHORE: Three persons died, while at least 21 people were left wounded after an explosion occurred in a house in Lahore's Johar Town area, Geo News reported Wednesday, citing rescue officials.
Per the report, rescue, police, and bomb disposal teams have reached the site of the incident, while the injured have been shifted to the city's Jinnah Hospital.
Witnesses say that the glass windows of nearby houses and buildings have been shattered. One of the buildings has been severely damaged and some vehicles parked at the site of the blast have also been affected.
Hospital officials say nearly two dozens people have sustained injuries and have been shifted to Lahore's Jinnah Hospital via private cars and auto-rickshaws.
The Jinnah Hospital management has asked people to come forward and donate blood for the injured, adding that treatment is being provided to the wounded.
According to hospital officials, the injured included one police official, a woman, and two children. Owing to the burns, the condition of all the injured is critical.
The sound of the blast was so loud that it was heard in faraway areas. However, the nature of the blast has not been ascertained yet. An eyewitness told Geo News that an unidentified individual parked a motorcycle near the house which later exploded.
Police have cordoned off the area for further investigation while traffic has been redirected.
Explosion aimed at high-value target
Inspector General Punjab Inam Ghani has said that police had been targeted in the attack. He advised the people to not listen to rumours related to the blast.
The IGP told media that the CTD is probing the incident and a detailed report will be shared about the nature of the blast and the material used in it.
"We are not sure what caused the explosion or whether it was a planted devise [that caused the explosion] or a suicide blast," he noted.
When asked about a high-value target near the crime scene, Ghani said had there been no police post, the vehicle could have reached it.
"You should be thankful to the police," he said.
He, however, did not share any additional information about the high-value target in the area.
Inam Ghani vowed to arrest those behind the terrorist act.
Interior minister takes notice
Following the bomb attack in Johar Town, the Lahore police chief issued directives to heighten security across the city.
Snap-checking in Johar Town and nearby areas have been increased, a statement from the CCPO office said.
Special instructions have been given to check suspicious individuals and unclaimed items.
Meanwhile, Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed has taken notice of the incident and has sought a report from the chief secretary and IG Punjab.
"The federal agencies are assisting the Punjab government in the investigation," the minister added.
CM Buzdar seeks details from IG Punjab
Following the incident, Chief Minister Punjab Sardar Usman Buzdar has asked the Inspector-General of Police to submit a detailed report of the blast to him.
Taking to Twitter, the Government of Punjab announced that the CM has ordered an immediate investigation of the incident.
An emergency has been declared in Jinnah Hospital to treat the injured, while Rescue 1122 and other relief organisation have been asked to expedite rescue activities.
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