Mall Road blast : LEAs complete forensic evidence collection

Items have been sent for testing as police continue their investigation

Muhammad Shahzad February 16, 2017
Security officials collect evidence at the site of a suicide bombing in Lahore on February 14, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

LAHORE: Law enforcement agencies cleaned up the scene of the deadly suicide blast that rocked Mall Road on Monday. The force collected forensic evidence from the site which saw the death of 14 people in front of the Punjab Assembly.

The crime scene was preserved and cordoned off after the blast. Investigation teams of the Counter Terrorism Department, Crime Scene Unit, Punjab Forensic Science Agency and others reconstructed the crime scene.

A senior CTD officer told The Express Tribune that the evidence collected by the investigation teams included the fingerprints of the right hand of the suspected suicide bomber. He said they sent the prints and DNA swabs to the Punjab Forensic Science Agency for analysis. He added the head of the suspect could not be recovered.

Other evidence included bloodstains, explosive material, damaged articles and CCTV footages. According to initial investigations, the suspected suicide bomber walked to the Punjab Assembly from Regal Chowk. He was escorted by an accomplice. Both of them reached the blast site and the bomber detonated his explosives near police officials, while the accomplice fled from the scene. Geo-fencing of the area was also completed.

To a question, the CTD official said though TTP Ahrar claimed responsibility; it does not mean the attack was necessarily carried out by the same outfit.

Punjab Home Minister Rana Sanaullah Khan told the media that pictures collected by law enforcement agencies and those issued by TTP Ahrar have certain similarities. He claimed the target of the suspects was protestors and not the police.

Funeral prayers

The funeral prayers of slain police officers and officials, including DIG Ahmad Mobeen, SSP Zahid Mehmood Gondal, DIG Mobeen’s operator ASI Ameen, CCPO’s escort in charge Head Constable Asmatullah, two gunmen of DIG Mobeen, CTD constables Aslam and Irfan Mehmood and Constable Nadeem Tanveer, were offered at the Police Training Centre on Bedian Road.

Published in The Express Tribune, February 16th, 2017.

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