Safora massacre death toll rises to 45 as Ismaili community say their last goodbyes

Assailants allegedly ran small hotel; forensics experts say attackers used multiple types of weapons


Web Desk/Munira Abbas May 14, 2015
PHOTO: AFP

KARACHI: Just a day after the deadly attack on Karachi's Ismaili community, the death toll rose to 45 as two critically injured succumbed to their injuries, Rizwan Jamil, communications officer for the Ismaili council of Pakistan confirmed Thursday.

The deaths come after funeral prayers for the 43 deceased were conducted in the city earlier today, with volunteers and scouts wearing their uniforms; which is only required during crucial moments in the community.


PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/EXPRESS


The funeral of one victim, Sani Sultan Ali from Salimabad took place on Wednesday evening.


PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/EXPRESS


People dispersed after the funeral, while children sat in silence in the courtyard inside the colony. Men departed for the graveyard. The Ismaili community will conduct prayers for the martyrs in their evening prayers.

President Aga Khan Council for Pakistan Iqbal Walji expressed his gratitude to the government, Army, political leaders and general public for their support.

Walji also acknowledged the assurance given by the authorities to ensure the safety and security of the Ismaili community in the country.

Culprits hail from Afghanistan

Initial investigation reports revealed that the culprits hailed from Afghanistan.


PHOTO: AFP


On the day of the attack, in which 45 persons including women and children were killed, Sindh Information Minister Sharjeel Memon said that some clues were found at the crime scene but was unable to share these due to security reasons.

Read: Macabre violence: Ugly face of terror

The men are said to hail from Afghanistan and allegedly ran a small hotel business in the city. A search operation is under way and investigation continues in efforts to bring the culprits to justice.

According to forensics experts, the attackers used multiple types of weapons, including 9mm pistols and sub machine guns.


PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/EXPRESS


The whole nation was saddened by the attack in which three of the assailants climbed aboard the alAzhar Gardens bus and opened fire at the 51 passengers on board the bus.

"People of Sindh, particularly Karachi think it is an attack on their home," Sharjeel Memon said when he addressed the media on Wednesday.


PHOTO: ATHAR KHAN/EXPRESS


Condolences poured in from across the world as rescue efforts and investigation and search operations commenced.

Investigation has led to the identification of the culprits who were reportedly dressed in western attire and fled the scene on two motorbikes.

A day of mourning is also being observed across the province.

"The government has failed the Ismailis"

Addressing the media, Muttahida Qaumi Movement's Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui ascertained that yesterday's incident was proof that a lot is yet to be done in the country.

"The government failed to provide security to this community," he said.


PHOTO: AFP


He added that "the incident has impacted everyone in the country and that the party would fight for the rights of every citizen."

"Sindh CM should hand in resignation" 

Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) chief Altaf Hussain in a statement urged Sindh Chief Minister Qaim Ali Shah to resign from his post on Thursday.

Read: Safora massacre: Important leads found from crime scene, says Sharjeel

On the day of the attack, CM Sindh while addressing the media confirmed the suspension of SHO and DSP of the area.

“This is an unprecedented incident and we will find those responsible,” he said.


PHOTO: AFP


He also added that "The pamphlet shows that terrorists have carried out the attack and they will not be left at any cost."

He ordered for an inquiry into the incident and sought a report within a week.

Further, the CM also announced compensation for victims of the bus attack in Karachi, promising Rs0.5m for victims’ families. 

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COMMENTS (24)

Shahid | 5 years ago | Reply | Recommend Where is Imran Khan , he can visit Multan to beg vote for Provincial Assembly but cannot visit Karachi on this occasion. He is hungry for power , speak about poor people and cannot come to Karachi for some words of sympathy for the families of the deceased ones. Shame on him
unknown | 5 years ago | Reply | Recommend I am also very sad after listening of deadly attack on the Ismaili community because I am also of this community."May Allah enter my all Ismaily partners in paradise.
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