Data Darbar Attacked: Suicide Bombers Murder 40+ in their War Against Pakistan

Posted on July 1, 2010
Filed Under >Adil Najam, Disasters, Law & Justice
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Adil Najam

(Editor’s note: Beware, the pictures here may be graphic and disturbing for some readers. Although, no more disturbing than the reality of murder and inhumanity that they depict.)

It was just weeks ago that we were humming along with Arif Lohar about selling wangaaN (bangles) at Data Sahib (the shrine of Data Ganj Bakhsh Hajveri) in Lahore. Today, brutal murderers ruthlessly butchered at least 40 innocent Pakistanis and injured another 170 in a heinous and dastardly suicide attack on Data Durbar that specifically targeted the vulnerable, the poor, the religious, the helpless in their ongoing war against Pakistan. This is one more in a string of attacks in and around Lahore which seem to have picked up just as momentum gathers for an operation against militants and extremists in the Punjab in the aftermath of the attack on Ahmedi worshipers in Lahore.

That Lahore’s single most iconic and revered location has been attacked – and on a jumaraat, which many consider to be sacred – reeks with symbolism and speaks volumes about the depth of hatred that these murderers have for all things Pakistan. Yes, I take this personally. Just as I have taken every murder of innocent Pakistanis anywhere in Pakistan, personally. Anyone who loves Lahore cannot hear of this and not have a shiver go down the spine; as it went mine. But that shiver is now a nearly daily occurrence. Whatever the symbolism of Data Sahib may be, it is paled by the outrage at the murder – yet again – of innocent people: the begunah, the masoom!

I would like to find the words to express that outrage, to express what Data Darbar means to so many, to describe the pain that pounds me once again as it has each time these murderers have hit Pakistanis anywhere. I would like to do that but – quite literally – my hands are trembling, my eyes have swelled up, and that shiver up my spine has gripped my entire body. Maybe later I will find the words to say what I need to say, but right now I ponder only on the darkness that resides in the hearts of the men who commit these acts, those who plan them, and those who choose to justify them.

For now, all I can do is to give you the essential details, as reported in Dawn:

LAHORE: In the first terrorist attack of its kind in the Punjab capital, two alleged suicide bombers blew themselves up at the Data Ganj Bakhsh shrine on Thursday night, killing at least 40 people and injuring 170 others. The first explosion took place in the basement reserved for ablution and the second in front of the shrine’s main building where a large number of people from across the province gather for worship on Thursdays.

At first, police announced that some crackers had exploded near the shrine. The two bombers entered the shrine and exploded themselves three minutes apart. Surveillance cameras, walkthrough gates and metal detectors turned out to be ineffective. Around 100 volunteers and several policemen were present in and around the shrine, searching visitors thoroughly.

Senior Superintendent of Police (Operations) Chaudhry Shafiq Ahmad told Dawn that two suicide attacks had been carried out and investigators had found the bombers’ skulls and limbs. He said ball-bearings and other material used in the blasts had also been collected. Lahore Commissioner Khusro Pervaiz Bakhtiar told journalists at the spot that the bombers had blown themselves up during a large congregation. In reply to a question about involvement of a foreign hand in the attack, he said the strike was a horrible conspiracy but “our own people become instruments in the hands of others”.

The official said an investigation had been launched about the breach in security measures. According to witnesses, the explosions were so powerful that a large number of people fell down and several of them were injured in a stampede. The shrine’s administration announced seconds after the first blast that a generator had exploded in the basement and they might continue their activities. The bomb disposal squad estimated that 10-15kgs of explosives had been used in each suicide jacket.

Ambulances of Rescue 1122 and the Edhi Foundation took the bodies and injured people to hospitals. According to a devotee, two gates on the north and south side of the shrine, which usually remain closed, were open on Thursday. He suspected that the bombers had entered through those gates. Scores of enraged people gathered outside the shrine and protested against terror attacks. They also damaged public and private property. There were reports that a cracker was exploded before the suicide blasts to create a panic.

Police evacuated Data Darbar to collect evidence and carry out rescue work. All commercial and residential buildings adjoining the shrine were also searched for suspects. Following the blasts, an extensive crackdown was launched across the city and several people were detained for interrogation. A suspect was also taken into custody near the Darbar. Rumours of terror attacks on other shrines in the city panicked devotees and police also launched a search operation there. Security was beefed up in and around all shrines and religious places.

89 Comments on “Data Darbar Attacked: Suicide Bombers Murder 40+ in their War Against Pakistan”

  1. ASAD says:
    July 1st, 2010 8:36 pm

    Adil, like you I am also speechless and shivering. Not with fear, but with anger. These killers are not just enemies of Pakistan, they are also enemies of Muslims. See how they only target and kill Muslims!

  2. Azra says:
    July 1st, 2010 8:46 pm

    These pictures are too painful to see. That is the blood of Muslims. These cursed taliban and their supporters will never be able to wash these sins off their conscience.

  3. Junaid says:
    July 1st, 2010 8:54 pm

    People responsible for this atrocity are

    1. Foreign hand
    2. Internal hand
    3. Invisible hand
    4. Visible hand
    5. Jewish hand
    6. Hindu hand
    7. US hand
    8. All hands except our own hand.

    Its time Pak army starts eliminating all terrorists whether they are anti-Pak or anti-India or anti-US.

    We must wake and realize that blaming others will not help us in any way. These Frankenstein are the creation of our own Pak army. Its their job to now clean the mess and do it wholeheartedly and without any exception.

  4. Ghulam Ali says:
    July 1st, 2010 9:01 pm

    These people are animals. These mullahs never wanted Pakistan and now they are out to destroy it

  5. Bushra says:
    July 1st, 2010 9:02 pm

    Adil Najam, sir please take that middle picture off it is too painful to watch.

  6. Nadeem Ahsan says:
    July 1st, 2010 9:20 pm

    Small correction about the title…. This is not a war against Pakistan… This is a a war for Pakistan. The extremists are gaining ground and getting stronger every day. The Ghazi force (yes the same red mosque killers) are now being held responsible for many attacks against GHQ.

    Funny indeed that right when an incident like this sends shivers down our spine, Gen Ashfaq Pervez Kayani and Gen. Shuja Pasha are brokering a dea; to install a warlord called Sirajuddin Haqani in neighbouring Afghanistan to support the Taliban, whose thinking is no different from these killers.

    And while all of this goes on, Rana Sanaullah is playing footsie with his buddies in Southern Punjab. The Sharif brothers howl, but take no action. The federal Govt has no control over the Punjab. So, Rehman Malik and Zardari can hardly be blamed for this mess. Zardari is not even the mayor of Islamabad.

    This is a failed policy. Our army supports the Taliban in Afghanistan who in turn influence the thinking of young minds in Punjab and elsewhere who then go around and kill fellow Pakistanis. Go figure.

  7. Haroon says:
    July 1st, 2010 9:24 pm

    Can propagandists like Mr. nadeem Ahsan, please take a break from ‘spinning’ things … at least until the blood of these innocent people dries. Can you not even give them that much dignity. Shame on you.

  8. ASAD says:
    July 1st, 2010 9:28 pm

    Please DONT remove this picture. It should keep reminding us about what beasts we are up against here and how cruel they are.

  9. Meray Bap says:
    July 1st, 2010 9:42 pm

    I wonder how long it will take Ibrahim, Adnan Siddiqui and Zecchetti to appear and tell us either directly or indirectly that since these people are not real Muslims killing them is no big deal

    I also predict that the same group of people (and their ilk) will start a needless and meaningless debate over whether Data Sahib himself was a real Muslim or not.

    Adnan, in particular will probably entertain us with his accusations of ‘evil leftists’ and tell us how in fact the drone attacks are the only thing we should me mourning.

    Time will tell whether I’m right or wrong…:)

  10. Praful Shah says:
    July 1st, 2010 10:02 pm

    Looking the photos, reading the news makes me angry as well as sad. These monsters were created and nurtured to kill Indians, especially Hindus. These were Pakistan army’s additional wing with blessing from Mr. Nawaz Sharif & Mrs. Bhutto. Now the chickens are coming home to roost.
    Sadly, neither Pakistanis politicians nor Pakistani army (ISI) does not give a damn. If they stop sheltering these sobs, the war will be over in very short time.
    What scares me most if they attack US as they did in 2001, I do not think US and The West will take lightly. It is matter of time they will have access to Pakistani Nukes. Than what?
    God only can help.

  11. July 1st, 2010 10:15 pm

    The event makes one speechless but more speechless I get over the conspiracy theorists comments we will face over this issue in days to come.

  12. Nadeem Ahsan says:
    July 1st, 2010 10:34 pm

    Haroon Sahib,

    I am only stating the facts. Every major news outlet has reported about the numerous trips of Gen Kayani and Pasha to Kabul in recent weeks to sell our most priced ‘strategic asset’ – The Taliban. This is the same Taliban whose demented thinking is now percolating down our youth in Punjab.

    Everything I say is for all to see. I am not spreading propaganda, spinning or telling lies.

    This is all about basic questions – Who is a muslim? Who can be a muslim? What is to be a Muslim? Who can determine that someone is a muslim? Who will make that call? Does the one with the gun make that call or is it the suicide bomber?

  13. July 1st, 2010 10:43 pm

    Some comments from the ATP Facebook Page:

    - “How inhuman these cursed Taliban are. They kill Muslims everywhere they find us.”
    - “That was not done by Talibans, Its for Sure Blackwaters, American backed terrorist organization, and this bloody Govt. of Zardari is allied with it.
    Can’t you ever think all these events happen within Lahore, so neatly, that non of our so called ISI, CIA or Punjab police can even trace their back. Talibans can never be so organised and so trained….
    No one get captured, because these people are safely transported into Lahore by Federal Govt. and they most probably reside in Balawal house or Governor house Lahore…
    Google Sirilankan team attack in Lahore you would get some pretty fine articles stating that attackers went all the way till Bilawal house In model town Lahore and then disappeared….. If your president can kill his wife for money, then who are ordinary people not to be killed for the sake of money……”
    - “i dnt agre wid u all that was a revnge by the qadiani.s………”
    - “[above comments] an excellent example of “Parha Likha Jahil”.”
    - “it is done by Pakistani talibans which are created by CIA and RAW to give a bad name to Afghani talibans.. Pakistani talibans have nothing to do with Islam.. they are non religious people who are working for CIA and RAW and our poor puppet government is doing nothing about it.. people are dying due to poverty and inflation and our government is still fighting to gain power over judiciary..
    Long live PAK Army and Intelligence.. and Long Live Pakistan”
    - “Blog post “This Parade of Bloodshed … ”
    - “For Sure it was not done by Qadiani, they were already under greaf…”
    - “being muslim is a distant thing, wahabis and taliban are not even human. The extremist version of sunni islam has gotten out of hand and we need to start making amends straight away. wahabism is zaleelism. it will drag us down into oblivion.”
    - “There is but only ONE solution to all the violence in Pakistan – declare it a secular state, ban all the religious parties (political or non-political), ban all the public display of any religion .. and change the education to secular thoughts .. otherwise be prepared to live in 7th century”
    - “”Taliban can never be so organised or trained”..Doesnt take much organisation to use children as bombs..All you need is a good deal of brainwashing which the taliban and taliban loving madrassas r extremely good at. There might be a hidden hand but taliban is not an innocent lot. We should learn to recognize the enemy within us…”
    - “hey say never happened in 800 years ,,, and i am sure its a foreign hand in it ,, dumbo security”
    - “and the typical rhetoric goes on – CIA, RAW, Musad, Hindu Jewish lobby, Zardari, Qadiani .. as many fingers as many directions .. cant you all open your eyes and see it is the militant religious zealots who are doing all this .. and the only way to delete the word “Islamic republic” from Pakistan and start to live in the 21st century”
    - “My blood boils at all the idiots and traitors who come to defend the Taliban who are the enemies of Pakistan. ALll the people who are defending the Taliban and giving stupid conspiracy theories, how many Pakistanis do you want to kill? Why do you hate Muslims? I say anyone defending the Taliban and these killers or trying to distract attention by stupid theories about foreign hands etc., they are all traitors and enemies of Pakistan themselves because they are supporting the killers of Pakistan.

  14. Eidee Man says:
    July 1st, 2010 10:49 pm

    It is often said that nations are not destroyed by outsiders; they implode. If the fact that this attack happened on a religious gathering doesn’t cause a national outrage against the terrorist groups, then I really don’t see how our society can survive.

  15. banjara286 says:
    July 1st, 2010 11:27 pm

    i agree with some other comments regarding the suitability of some of the pictures posted with this article. please remove them immediately.

  16. Qaiser says:
    July 1st, 2010 11:37 pm

    Yes, the picture is difficult to take. But so is the reality. Let us face reality and the brutality of what these Taliban are doing to us. Please keep the picture so that we can be reminded as others say.

  17. July 1st, 2010 11:42 pm

    Some more comments from the ATP Facebook Page:

    - “Reading all these conspiracy theories about CIA, RAW, Blackwater, Qadiani … reminds me of a psychiatry lesson I learned in med school … When someone is diagnosed with cancer and is told about it … first reaction is Denial followed by Anger …. Unfortunately majority of Pakistanis are still in first two of these stages … Get your heads out of sand and realize this menace of Taliban/Alqaida created in name of religion …”
    - “If we will not do something, who else will? ”
    - “All Taliban Apologists need to spend sometime under taliban rule. Im sure they wont defend these guys after seeing them up close and personal. Infact i am sure these people wont survive a month under the tyranny of the taliban. Or rather, ask them if they would like a taliban govt in Kabul and they will jump out of their seats in excitement. However, ask them if they would like Mullah Umar as their president and I am sure they most of them will not be as enthusiastic. HYPOCRITES……and then the sad fact is that these guys come up with wild theories of Pakistani interests in Afghanistan…so basically their theory is: “Let the taliban screw the Afghanis so they dont get time to screw the Pakistanis”….HOW disgusting and dumb.
    Reality check people…These mullahs have now tasted life in Pakistan,,they will never limit themselves to afghanistan.”
    - “whosoever is responsible, the problem is our govt,securities agencies r not performing their jobs or they r least bothered or what??????”
    - “My heart goes out to all who lost their loved ones and the poor ones who are injured in this tragedy. Humanity has lost again to barbarism, intolerance, bigotary, sense of self righteousness. So many breathing souls on this earth but unfortunately very few ‘humans’.
    I was recently reading an article by Ndeem Paracha in dawn which very aptly describes the neurotic state of mind of a big chunk of pakistanis ( some of which is depicted in some of the above comments)-
    “Years of misrule by military dictators and civilians and early erosion of the hope and glory that was attached to the creation of Pakistan have for long left Pakistanis in a deadly ideological quagmire. A collective neurotic state of mind has emerged in which feelings of disappointment and scepticism about Pakistan’s religious and political raison d’être are severely (and at times instinctively) repressed.
    The resultant psychological anguish of this self-repression is then attempted to be set off by loud (but empty) proclamations of patriotism and a belief in meta-myths and superfluous ‘historical’ and religious narratives that feed the manufacturing process of a superiority complex found in the majority Muslim citizens. This is symptomatic of the prevailing myopia in society.
    Alternative experiences, narratives and arguments that are not part of the state-sponsored, conservative or ulema-sanctioned cannon (regarding history, ideology and religion) are ignored or shunned as attacks on rationally discredited theories of nationhood and belief.”
    at the end he also quotes a thought provoking conversation -
    ” n 1988, while reading about a stoning to death incident (of an adulteress) in the former NWFP, the late Dr Makri — a forgotten, broken intellectual — once told me that Pakistan was abandoned by God. I was in college in those days and going through a Marxist phase. So I asked him how God could abandon a people who pray so regularly and talk so often about his religion.
    “They don’t pray to the compassionate, benevolent and merciful God of Islam,” Dr Makri replied. “They pray to a violent deity preached to them by the mullahs, generals and inflexible ulema.”
    I hope and pray that there are more humans on this earth , who love human values, who are tolerant to others beleifs and who live and let others live.”

  18. Ravi says:
    July 2nd, 2010 12:00 am

    I don’t get it. Is Pakistani Muslim blood less precious than Palestenian blood? Racist Arabs thugs and their belowed creatures called Talibans dont give a damn about Pakistan. Unfortunately Pakistan has to cry alone in this tragedy. God bless the departed souls.

  19. Anita says:
    July 2nd, 2010 1:36 am

    I have lost the words to express anger and sadness.

  20. Ahmed Siddiqui says:
    July 2nd, 2010 1:47 am

    The Taliban are the real followers of Islam and Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and Pakistanis are paying for their sins especially Punjabi Pakistanis for disobeying ALLAH. Why else will so much havoc be wreaked upon them. The answer is only one ‘Majority of Pakistanis are not Muslims but Kafirs’. Pakistan is a land which is Muslim only in its name and not by its actions. Our ISI, our interference in daily lives of poor Afghans, our attempt to hamper peace in Afghanistan and our Punjabi brainless Army are all the reasons why there will be so many more DATA DURBAR Blasts to come.
    The world is asking us to wake up and see the truth and we are busy formulating conspiracy theories.
    The taliban have one focussed target ‘TO BE A GOOD MUSLIM’, a job they are doing perfectly follwing the word of Quran and Wahabbi Islam followed by Saudi Arabia. On the other hand we are a confused chaotic society following blasphemous Sufi Pakistani Islam and we are not even interested in voting in a virtuous government or listening and accepting even the problems of Pakistan. So we will have to face this. All courtesy the PUNJABIS.
    The taliban are right ‘You shall worship no other god than ALLAH’. They are devoted muslims.
    Long Live Taliban and more deaths at places like Data Durbar. Allah Hu Akbar.

  21. Imtiaz Darr says:
    July 2nd, 2010 2:01 am

    Look at any other so called ‘ISLAMIC’ countries except Pakistan. Humaare alawa kisi ne theka nahi liya hai ISLAMIC ka. This ‘ISLAMIC REPUBLIC’ Thing is just going too far now there is no safe place in Pakistan. Our culture is due to our geography and even if we do have a religion imported from desert area what is the need to follow it in a resource rich country like Pakistan????? If we follow also, why only our stupid government has taken the responsibility to spread it. Only Pakistanis are dying in the name of ISLAM. Other countries simply sit and finance our deaths on the sideline.

  22. July 2nd, 2010 2:17 am

    Terrorist attack doesn’t regard for human life and I know that innocent people are much affected with the attack. I don’t know what’s going on the mind of this terrorist. We should make protection eliminate terrorist plots. Additionally, we must pray for the innocent people who are victim of terrorist acts.

  23. aarvey, india says:
    July 2nd, 2010 2:34 am

    One more blast and one more feather in Pakistan’s bloody history. Its amazing how strongest institution in Pakistan – The army – still tolerates ( at Pakistan’s expense) groups in Waziristan/ punjab / balochistan and actually fosters some kind of relationship with the hope of gaining a foothold in afghanistan. They are playing a subtle double game with their own country as well as with the coalition forces and Afghanistan. If one has gone back and objectively studied the 63 odd years of pakistans history it would be obvious that the Army has contributed most to Pakistan’s ills. Problem is they are not willing to learn – there is too much of ego involved.

  24. Shez says:
    July 2nd, 2010 4:17 am

    Why have you posted that gory picture on this site? At least you should have mentioned “graphic images” to warn readers. Is it responsible journalism? I guess you got carried away in emotions.

  25. Sam says:
    July 2nd, 2010 4:28 am

    @Ahmed Siddiqui , People like you suck, big time. Pakistan is a land of Sufis and we never wanted saudi wahabism to visit us. for people like you, I leave judgement to Allah as Allah knows who is better , one who kills innocent or one who loves people and spread the his right message.

  26. DARWEESH says:
    July 2nd, 2010 5:47 am

    Sheer madness,height of “Jahalat”
    Long Live Pakistan

  27. Shehryar says:
    July 2nd, 2010 6:29 am

    I feel you should avoid such graphic images in the main story. If you feel it is essential to convey the story, it should be a link with a warning, or have a layer on top similar to the way the Boston Globe handles it (although this may be difficult to pull off without “tech support”)

  28. Pakistani says:
    July 2nd, 2010 7:03 am

    Adil Najam sahab,
    Please follow a responsible journalism and remove the images from the main story page immediately.

    Otherwise, complaint will be lodge against you and your website in media regulatory authority.

  29. Laloona says:
    July 2nd, 2010 7:42 am

    This is truly unbelievable. In a country where daily killings are marked by apathy, this is hair-raising. It leaves everyone speechless.

    while no-one wants to gloss over the goriness of it all, I do agree with the earlier commentators, that such graphic images shouldnt have been shared.

  30. July 2nd, 2010 8:18 am

    These People are not Muslims and they are the real enemy of Islam

  31. vtpcnk says:
    July 2nd, 2010 8:31 am

    a drop of poison will inevitably poison the well. religious communities war against each other saying they are god’s chosen ones and that the other is the unbeliever. soon it is only a matter of time that the venom turns inward and against themselves.

    in this latest gory episode we know only one thing : whoever committed it had nothing to do with goodness or virtue.

  32. RamRahim says:
    July 2nd, 2010 8:55 am

    I agree that such gory pictures should be removed. There is no GOOD or BAD terrorist. A person who spreads hatred in any form is a terrorist. I have a question for the guys who always blame Hindus for every thing evil happening in Pakistan. If Pakistan is so PAK why spread hatred in J&K and every where else in the world. Every second terrorist caught in the world has links to Pakistan. Muslims everywhere from US to Indonesia, from Kurdistan to Kashmir seems to be always against the system. If they are in minority they cry that the system is against them, if they are in majority they start asking for separate land. How much land one needs for burial?
    Pakistan’s policy has always been India and Hindu centric, look what have you achieved. People frown and become uneasy where they see a Pakistani. We also have our own problems but at least we don’t export fidayeen.Indian muslims are very happy in INDIA.You may talk about Gujarat,but who started the fight (muslim mob burned the train carry Hindu pilgrims).I am against the killing, all who died were INDIAN first and then Hindus or Muslims.WE DON’T HAVE TO MENTION OUR RELIGION IN ANY DOCUMENT (EVEN IN PASSPORT) IN INDIA.
    Hindus constitute 78% ,muslims 12% of the population of India,still they are very happy.ISI and the subsequent government in Pakistan have to rise about religion politics and work to get rid of this cancer which has already spread a lot.

  33. Tosser says:
    July 2nd, 2010 9:01 am


    Why does everything have to be about you Indians?

    Please worry about yourself as you have more than enough problems of your own.

  34. RamRahim says:
    July 2nd, 2010 9:03 am

    I know we have our own problem but 75% problems are Pakistan created.

    July 2nd, 2010 9:06 am

    when i heard the news of bombing, i could not believe it, i thought this was some kind of sick joke and i felt my stomach turning but now i know it was all real. I never believe in shrines but i always respect them cause so many of my fellow citizons believes in them and they are part of us and we are part of them regardless of our believes. militant islam start an open war on history and believes of pakistan and what struck me most was interview of “munawar hassan” leader of “jamaat-i-islami” who said that his party oppose any opereation against terrorists in southern punjab in other words “jamaat-i-islami” know these killers and wants to make sure they stay safe, i wish jamaat-i-islami would feel the same for innocent pakistani people also. i think it is time to take gloves off and start a war against “wahabi” islam and inflict the pain to them same way rest of pakistanies are feeling, wahabies have the help of taliban,alqaeda and saudi arabia but who is helping poor people?? our government or USA and answer is no one……
    i know war is bad but it is time for PAYBACK.

  36. Tosser says:
    July 2nd, 2010 9:10 am


    If an Indian catches a cold it’s Pakistan’s fault… somehow? LOL

    We know very well, the extent of your collective imaginations so it’s hardly news to me.

    Are you going to blame the Naxalites on Pakistan as well???

  37. HH says:
    July 2nd, 2010 9:30 am

    Keep the pictures. Far too many Pakistanis are in denial that we are in a state of war. These pictures, in their own way, bring that reality home.

  38. Saras Lakhi says:
    July 2nd, 2010 10:23 am

    All killings are hurtful and shameful for us South Asians.It is personally devastating for me because my parents were from Lahore. Data Saabs Dargah featured in all their memories. Please accept my condolences… all of us are shell-shocked.

  39. Sridhar says:
    July 2nd, 2010 10:32 am

    Terrible incident at a place that stands for peace. My condolences to the families of those killed. Also, the CCTV video shows somebody chasing the suicide bomber and trying to catch him before he sets the bomb off. It does not seem like a policeman, but an ordinary civilian. That must be a very brave man. I hope he is ok.

  40. Waheed says:
    July 2nd, 2010 10:49 am

    I wonder why people want to deny the reality of the cruelty of what this Taliban are doing. Maybe they are Taliban supporters themselves. PLEASE KEEP THE PICTURES and show the real face of these brutal murderers and enemies of Pakistan.

  41. Faisal Bari says:
    July 2nd, 2010 10:56 am

    Dear Adil,
    Like everyone who has written and commented, it is hard to express the outrage…attack on mosques, places of worship, murder of innocents and innocence…is a complete negation of all ethical norms in all religons, ideologies and ways of being.

    Being from Lahore, having a lot of attachment to the Data Darbar, and having spent thursday nights there sometimes also…the reaction was similar to one you described. And it was difficult not to cry…for all the people killed and for what we have let ourselves be.

    To do it at Data sb. has a few other angles to it too. It is a place where a lot of needy gather looking for succour. To target a place like that…is odious beyond belief.

    But there is a political side to it too. If you wanted to shake up people in Punjab, one way or the other, you could not choose a more symbolic site. Even if the CM house was attacked…it would not mean the same thing for most Lahoris, Punjabis and Pakistanis….it was Data darbar….need one say more. So, a message is being sent. This war now surely needs to be won…and if we continue to think it is our neighbour who is being affected and not us….it will soon be the time when as Maurice Ogden said
    “Beneath the beam that blocked the sky
    none before stood so alone as I.
    The Hangman then strapped me…with no voice there
    to cry “Stay!” … for me in the empty square.”

    The last few lines of The Hangman

    Allah give us all strength to rise up and do what is needed.

  42. Naveed says:
    July 2nd, 2010 11:20 am

    Do we need any more reasons to completely shut down all seminaries and reverse the hideous process that Zia started? Data Darbar is the heart of Lahore and symbolizes the centuries old culture of the subcontinent. The creatures who planned this attack surely are not looking for support from the common man in Pakistan. Who is it that supports them?

    I have decided not to do this in the future, but if you read comments posted by those outside Pakistan on websites like Yahoo and even PBS, they blame the victims–the Pakistani people themselves–for all this chaos. Nay, many of them gloat at innocent deaths and jeer at our pain. We are alone in this, and we must rely on ourselves to root out this satanic evil.

  43. Rasheed says:
    July 2nd, 2010 12:55 pm

    The heart of Lahore has been attacked. An ISLAMIC center used for PEACEFUL worship has been attacked. A place where hungry and homeless people would stop by for help and sustenance. I have myself shared a few morsels there by breaking bread with the spirtually (and physically) hungry. It’s almost as if someone is trying to make a point of being utterly heartless, barbaric and callous.

    Usually I am not shaken so much that I would not offer some analysis of what might be the underlying cause. But the two recent attacks in Lahore only about a month apart in peaceful places of worship have left me speechless. What makes it more painful personally is that I have received news of casualties among close relatives; and that I have worshipped at all three of these mosques — at Datta Darbar, near which I once lived; as well as Daruz Zikar and Baitun Noor, the Ahmadi mosques that were bombed late May.

    Please call for all mosques to be protected by police presence, and major “soft targets” with military and comando presence as well, even if it means that every worshipper has to go through metal detectors, or some form of security system.

    Let’s pray for the souls of the departed and for strength to the bereaved families. Pakistan is going through a very deep crisis that might undo its creation. We need to band together and stay united – all sects, colours, castes, provinces, faiths, we are all the same.

    On the one hand, it was refreshing to see your piece paying tributes to a Pakistani tennis player team up with an Indian one, here we are now when we can’t get along even with our own brethren and are killing our own national spirit. Inna Lillahi Wa Inna Ilaihi Raji’oon.

  44. Salman says:
    July 2nd, 2010 4:04 pm

    oh yes.. THOSE terrorists who are against pakistani policies should be taught a lesson..

    THOSE who try to become more than a “strategic asset” should be eliminated..

    THOSE “actors” who have define kufar and muslims in a “non-state” way should be taken off the stage..

    only THOSE !!!

    otherwise all terrorists are not bad… please don’t give up the hypocrisy on which we have built our country all along .. don’t cut at the roots.. instead reinforce the “foundation” even further !!! nothing stands without a foundation …

    if you cut at the roots of our country .. there will be nothing left.. only hatred and hypocrisy can help us keep going.. we only need to CHANNELIZE and better organize it.. let all this bloodshed only be a lesson on how to “tame” the good terrorists..

  45. GUPTA says:
    July 2nd, 2010 5:22 pm

    Good thing that Pakistanis are dying. More Pakistanis die the better for the world

  46. Asif Riaz says:
    July 2nd, 2010 7:31 pm

    Why is it that Indian propagandists come out of the woodwork to gloat over Pakistanis dying.

    Dushman marey tay khushi na kareeye, sajnaa ve mar jana

  47. faraz says:
    July 2nd, 2010 7:39 pm

    They (terrorist) own pakistan. They have support og GEO news , PML(N) and Imran Khan.

    Just pray that your family dont get kill in their wrath.

  48. Anwer says:
    July 2nd, 2010 9:12 pm

    An informed discussion between Tahira Abdullah, Javaid Ahmed Ghamidi and Irfan Siddiqui about his event and related issues.

  49. Asim says:
    July 2nd, 2010 10:05 pm

    To those who want these images removed, a picture can be worth thousand words…in our case not even million words can describe the suffering of innocent people on both sides, the innocent ones killed by Taliban/al Qaida and the innocent ones killed by governments.

    Please keep these images up and upload more images like these so people see the suffering and appreciate the value of life.

    If God wanted human sacrifices, he could have created billions of angels just to do that…God never provided clear orders of what he wanted us to do…it all our interpretation og how we perceive His messages…honestly, i think not even prophets knew what God was saying…or maybe there was no message from God ever!

    I dont know this, but has there even been a prophet who did not profit from the crowd that gathered around him thinking if they dont follow the “God’s message this guy is giving” God’s wrath would come on to them?….fear of the unknown can be very controlling!

    Also, has anyone ever done any root cause analysis to determine what conditions or background provoke people to commit such violent act where even their most precious thing, their life is not enough to stop them?

  50. Nadeem says:
    July 2nd, 2010 11:32 pm

    @Asif Riaz. You are right. I was thinking the same. At least people like Gupta say what is on their mind. Then we can ignore them. But all these others who make up Pakistani sounding name and vomit their propaganda and gloat over Pakistanis dying to try to ‘construct’ ideas is so pathetic. I wonder is they are paid to do so or they think it is their ‘national duty’ to do this!!!

    I guess their RAW is no better than our ISI. May both rot in hell.

  51. Seemi says:
    July 2nd, 2010 11:38 pm

    These killers are doing this in a very systematic manner. Attacking all religious groups to spread hatred and differences. They attack Shia processions, Ahmedi mosques, Sufi Shrines, Sunni mosques. Then their tattoos come to finger point at each other and have everyone fighting everyone. Their agendts and mouthpieces come and spread hatred for one sect or the other and they sit back and smile at the mayhem. That is their evilness.

  52. Ravi says:
    July 3rd, 2010 12:44 am

    Shame on you Gupta, coward Taliban. Your mom should have aborted you creep.

  53. Shankar says:
    July 3rd, 2010 1:03 am

    I agree with Gupta. There is no use in appeasing these Pakis. This is the only way they will learn. Good that Pakistanis are dying, now they know what it feels like. All Pakistanis deserve to die. If their army had a backbone it would deal with these Taliban like our great Military dealt with the Sikh who we have now controlled and who make no noises. Instead, the Pakistani army just uses the Taliban itself. So, I say, let them all die!

  54. Shaista says:
    July 3rd, 2010 1:05 am

    Each new bombing is a more desperate step by the Taliban. May they all burn in hell.

  55. Naveed says:
    July 3rd, 2010 1:29 am

    Who are these creeps Gupta and Shankar? Why don’t you remove their garbage? Why are they even visiting if they are so full of hatred for Pakistan?

  56. Marty says:
    July 3rd, 2010 2:14 am

    Hatred is a curse. Hatred is what leads to these killings. And the sad part is that there is also so much hatred in some of the comments her.

  57. Faizan says:
    July 3rd, 2010 2:18 am

    My prayers are for those who gave their lives and for their families.

  58. Faraz says:
    July 3rd, 2010 2:47 am

    Not everyone can handle such graphic images. There could also be kids browsing this blog. Please take that into consideration. May be put the image inside a link with a warning.

  59. maqsood says:
    July 3rd, 2010 6:03 am


    “These pictures are too painful to see. That is the blood of Muslims.”

    For heaven’s sake, Azra, can’t we be a human being even for one moment?

    You make it sound as if it would have been a less tragedy if the blood had been of non-Muslims.

  60. Sami says:
    July 3rd, 2010 8:52 am

    Those who are appalled at the image. THERE IS A WARNING RIGHT IN THE FIRST LINE.

    But I wonder why people are appalled at the image but not at the reality. Or is it that they are really trying to save the ‘image’ of the Taliban murders.

    Face the reality of these murderers, Pakistan. That is the first step towards recovery.

  61. Hamza says:
    July 3rd, 2010 9:25 am

    Got to agree, those pictures are too graphic and a bit disrespectful. I don’t think we need to post pictures of blood covered limbs of those murdered. And while there is a warning note, the pictures are posted on the main page (I noticed the pictures before beginning to read the article).

  62. mrizvi says:
    July 3rd, 2010 11:13 am

    I encourage my younger cousins here in Canada and US to read Pakistaniat. Please don’t post such graphic pictures.
    Thank you

  63. Saeeduzzaman says:
    July 3rd, 2010 11:15 am

    The comments from Shankar and Gupta are disturbing but not surprising. The only surprising thing is that they are now saying this openly rather than the usual Indian thing about changing your name and spamming as if you were someone else, or the all I-am-so-nice and you-are-so-troubled paternalism that we usually see from them.

    I suspect, they feel confident now and really want to express the happiness at seeing so many Pakistanis being killed. I say let the do what they wish, we should focus on our real challenge today which is the Taliban. I am sure there are many Indians who are good and decent people and these hatemongers (the Indian Taliban) should be ignored. Of course others who hate us will laugh at our misery, what else can you expect.

  64. p4kistan says:
    July 3rd, 2010 2:24 pm

    …as much as i hate shrine worship, i hate the death of innocents many times over…when will people realise whoever this baba ji in his grave was or did, he can’t answer your prayers, can’t even help himself nevermind anybody else…

  65. Obaid1 says:
    July 3rd, 2010 3:15 pm

    Selective Mourning – by Bahadar Ali Khan

    We have adopted different yard sticks to gauge the level of pain. In the case of bombing of minorities like Christians, Ahmedis, Hindus or Sikhs happen, the general society doesn’t really worry about and business goes as usual. Equal apathy is prevalent in Shia-Sunni killings. Only the aggrieved camp mourns their deaths, the other one bothers little. Even the bombing of Peshawar and that of Lahore is treated differently. We shed more tears if something happens in Lahore. The concept of humanity and the pain of it, have become alien factors to our society now. We are charged only when something is projected by media, that is why the Israeli attack on Flotilla and siege of Gaza has more importance then the millions of our own besieged people of Parachanar in Kurram Agency.

  66. Tim says:
    July 3rd, 2010 3:41 pm


    u are a perfect example of an idiot who has learned to type few words like an ape. How ignorant you are to say “baba ji”. well moron, baba ji does not need help. Do you even know what you are talking about.

    You must be from wahabee sect and probably involved in designing this massacre. the day will come when beasts like you will burn in the hell they have lit up for others. if you are in front of me, i will slap you hard so that u come out of stupor and eternal damnation.

    what a moron to come here and talk trash in face of this tragedy. shame on you million times. yazeed ki nasel.

  67. p4kistan says:
    July 3rd, 2010 5:23 pm

    @..tim…nice, but dim…..
    wahabi? is that supposed to be an insult? you would have insulted me more if you called me a sufi…i follow the salaf, the first three generations of people who the prophet (saw)said are the best generation…tell me, did the sahabah go to the grave of the prophet (saw) at the time of drought? they could have done, it was shortly after his passing away….He (saw) also said if you see a grave higher than an armspan level it to the ground…do you have a problem with that? or maybe you think data sahab will protect you in your grave? like i said, i deteste the killing of innocent people, even the recent killings of ahmedis in recently….so cluth your taweez tightly round your neck and continue in your pick and mix beliefs…

  68. Obaid1 says:
    July 3rd, 2010 5:51 pm

    Pakistan: The crisis of Punjab — Guardian Editorial

    No one in Pakistan, let alone Nawaz Sharif, who hopes one day to return to national power, can tolerate a policy of accommodating jihadis, or keep them as backroom allies in the mistaken belief that this is the best way of containing them. After the last two attacks, his brother Shahbaz cannot claim to have the situation under control in the Punjab. It is not and it needs a concerted police and intelligence operation (the army, too, needs to get off the fence) against all jihadis to settle the point of who runs the country’s most populous province.

  69. Musalman says:
    July 3rd, 2010 5:52 pm

    I think p4kistan has the right to his opinion. I do not agree with him and I think he is wrong, but he has a right to be wrong.

    If p4kistan and his Salafi murdering freidns believe that some ‘baba’ in a grave whether in Lahore or in Medina means nothing, then that is his right. He is just wrong. These Salafis obviously do not understand the principles of Islam because their mission is to destroy the religion of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) that is what they are doing by killing Muslims everywhere they can find us and distorting our religion to their evil purposes. Let them try it, they will not succeed because Allah is the savior of Islam and Allah will deal with all Salafi enemies of Islam who abuse the name of the Prophet!

  70. USMAN says:
    July 3rd, 2010 5:59 pm

    Those who did this and those who in any way defend or deflect this are enemies of Pakistan. That is all I know and all I care.

  71. Omer says:
    July 3rd, 2010 6:36 pm

    I don’t know, if any one else has pointed out and neither am sure about policy of Pakistaniat, but, I was wondering if it is good to post such violent media (pictures) here?

  72. tim says:
    July 3rd, 2010 7:03 pm

    @ omer it is perfectly right to show this horror here cause then u can see smell the stink of rotting salafi and wahabee beasts like p4kistan.

  73. Riaz Haq says:
    July 4th, 2010 2:46 am

    Tragic as it is, I don’t think the real identities and the agendas of the patrons and the financiers of such heinous attacks are well understood. The list of possible backers appears to be long and diverse, extending from self-serving Pakistani politicians to elements within Pakistani and/or foreign intelligence agencies. Each of them have their own agenda to exploit the internal divisions and the availability of remote-controlled human drones willing to commit such acts for their own misguided reasons and motivations. I personally believe that India is at or near the top of the list of suspects in this unfolding tragedy.

    I am basing my opinion on the track record (RAW’s extensive role in East Pak and Balochistan) and the desire (as expressed through multiple Op Eds and analyses carried by Indian media) of the Indian security establishment. It can also be seen in India’s so-called “think tanks” and “analysts” which are the product of a revolving door in Delhi copied directly from Washington like the Bollywood knockoffs of Hollywood.

    Please read:

  74. Tasleem says:
    July 4th, 2010 7:50 pm

    I request ATP to do a special pictorial post with as many pictures of what these killers have done as possible. We need to keep reminding ourselves of their brutality.

  75. down with taliban says:
    July 4th, 2010 9:26 pm

    Talabanee apologizers say this mayhem is in retaliation. There is new terrorist group which is called ghazi group, who are so called avengers of laal masjid. they are killing innocent people to take avenge. they beleive they were wronged and this is just a retaliation

    My question is in last three years after laal masjid these salafi beasts have killed hundreds and thousands of civilians. Why dont a civilian who lost his or her loved ones in these brutalities can take revenge from these talabanee beasts. It is because these talabness and ghazis or whtever are organized killers who take dictation from oil money from saudi arabia. this is there planned action.

    pakistan had the potential to be the asian tiger and these arabs and afghanis beasts cldnt stand that pakistan shall progress. The way they keep pakistani slaves in arab countries in the same way they wanted to enslave the whole country in the name of religious blood bathed salafi ideology.

    khud hurem mai baith ker shrabain paitain hain, auratoon ka rape kertain hain, child sexual abuse is common too in these talabanees and arab sheikhs and then they also do politics on the name of yazeedi idealogy. no one is safe from them, ahmdeis, shias, sunnis, christians, hindus, they will kill everyone and anynone, even a saint who died 900 yrs ago and converted hundreds and thousands of down trodden people in subcontinent to isalm through love and generosity is not safe. they will kill a dead man and rape a died woman, and cut into pieces the body of dead child.

    their hatred doesnot stop with your death, wake up people and say no to religious extremism. Those sunnis who sympathised with these, cause it was either the christains persecuted or ahmedis murdered or a shia killed, now need to wake up. cause now its sunnis turn to be killed by this salafi beast.

    Make Pakistan clean, say no religion’s interference in state, say no to aplogizers of talaban, say no to media channels giving airtime to yazeedi soch, say no to politicians like nawaz sharif who make deals with talaban.

  76. atheist says:
    July 4th, 2010 9:58 pm

    it always amuse me how after every attack some people say “i condemn the killings but these people were wrong” and they were worshiping wrong god or wrong prophets and so on…some times they sound like they have more sympathy with the killers than the victims…..i always said (all) religion(s) and esp Islam have long way to go to prove to us that it is really a religion of peace, just cause it is said in “quran” it does not make better religion but it will take hard work and forgiveness which i do not find in Muslims yet. it is very sad to read some the painful comments toward innocents who died at “data durbar”.

  77. Ghausia says:
    July 4th, 2010 9:59 pm

    We should beef up security at places where people gather. It will be difficult but we really need to do it.

  78. Fareed Asim says:
    July 4th, 2010 10:56 pm

    There is really not much that government or any security agency can do if these militants keep being ready to do suicide. How many places can you check? and how much? The ONLY solution is budding this from teh beginning. And that means a real crackdown on all seminaries.

    I THINK ALL SEMINARIES OF ALL RELIGIONS EVERYWHERE IN PAKISTAN SHOULD BE CLOSED. If you do not do everyone there will be fisad. There is no need for any madrassa. They do no good. It does not matter which sect or which type. Just close them all.

  79. ASAD says:
    July 4th, 2010 11:11 pm

    News from DAWN

    LAHORE: Pakistan police have arrested 12 suspected terrorists over attacks on two worship places of the Ahmedi community and a hospital in Lahore, officials said on Sunday.

    They were arrested in the suburbs of the eastern city and police also seized “huge quantity of explosive material and weapons from their custody”, deputy chief of police operations Rao Sardar told AFP.

    Sardar did not disclose when the arrests were made. In May, suspected Sunni militants wearing suicide vests burst into two Ahmadi places of worship in Lahore and killed 82 worshippers.

    At least four people were killed in another attack three days later on Jinnah hospital, where victims from the places of worship were being treated.

    Sardar said the weapons seized included rocket launchers, hand grenades and anti-aircraft guns.

    Another senior police official, Zulfiqar Hameed, confirmed the arrests.

    News of the arrests came three days after twin suicide attacks on a Sufi shrine in Lahore killed 43 people.

    Police said they have “apprehended” several people in their investigation into Thursday’s bombings, which left a trail of carnage at a shrine dedicated to a Sufi saint.

    Lahore has increasingly suffered Taliban and Al-Qaeda-linked violence, with around 265 people killed in nine attacks since March last year.

    The city is considered a playground for Pakistan’s elite and home to many top brass in the military and intelligence community. -AFP

  80. Jahanzeb says:
    July 5th, 2010 6:16 am

    It sunders my heart how some people here and e-Jihadis on this website cheer the inhuman attacks on the sufi shrine.

  81. Sarah says:
    July 5th, 2010 5:21 pm

    First we do things that are against Islam, like going to these mazaars.
    Then we get all teary-eyed when bad things happen.

  82. banjara286 says:
    July 5th, 2010 7:50 pm

    personally, i vehemently disagree with all this shrine stuff; never been to one in my life (and do not plan to).

    … but, r u seriosuly saying that innocent people deserve to be mercilessly slaughtered by animals just because they visit and pray at the shrines?

    i can’t believe u said what u said.

  83. Rizwan says:
    July 5th, 2010 10:26 pm

    I fear that with these recent attacks – this and on the Ahmedi mosque – the terrorists have made major victories because they have divided the society further and have firqa fighting firqa. That is their ultimate plan.

  84. readinglord says:
    July 5th, 2010 11:38 pm


    Well-said, dear! It may open their eyes that God has treated both of them, Ahmadies and Sunnies, equally, but worse than Mushrikin-e-Makah, in respect of their place of worship.

  85. Asim says:
    July 6th, 2010 4:20 pm

    Sorry if anyone already mentioned this, maybe Gupta and Shankar are disguising as Indians to fuel the hatred amongst Pakistanis and Indians.

    If you think about it, there are billions of Dollars, Euros, Yuans and Rubels to be made as long as there is tension between India and Pakistan!

  86. Adeesh says:
    July 6th, 2010 4:54 pm

    the best thing about Muslims is that they are just destroying each other and themselves.

  87. Salman says:
    July 7th, 2010 12:21 am

    Rehmat-i-Syed-i-Loolaq pay kamil Iman
    Ummat-i-Syed-i-Loolaq say khouf aata hai

  88. Watan Aziz says:
    July 7th, 2010 7:11 pm

    To our Indian friends: I share your pain and sorrow. And I am very grateful for your love and compassion. You really make South Asia a nice place to live.

    Please, understand, I have been most moved by your emotions. I have been able to talk GOP into compensation for your loss.

    GOP has announced that they will award each one of you $1,000.00 for your passioned desire for peace and brotherly love for Pakistanis.

    The transactions will be manged by ATP. Please send a self-addressed envelope with a certified funds check for USD15.00 to cover the handling by ATP. You must include your ID card issued by RSS for verification purposes only. (If you are a resident of State of Gujrat, you will each get an additional amount of $250.00 for your next pogrom. Due to higher amount, your handling fee is USD25.00.)

    Disclaimer: This is not a solicitation. This is not a GOP award. This is not an ATP endorsement. This is classified as “dekho, iss ko take it easy loe” spoof.

    PS. Adil has already expressed on the behalf of Pakistanis and those who love Pakistan. Ditto.

  89. Maham says:
    August 29th, 2011 4:29 am

    So mass-killing of innocent people -no matter what creed they embrase or whatever they believe in- is a part of your sick Islamic teachings? This is another work of cowards who can’t confront their opponents, so they bomb them at times of worship in mosques or temples or during their relaxation at restaurants or cafes. They said “Wilt thou place therein one who will make mischief therein and shed blood? Whilst we do celebrate Thy praises and glorify Thy holy (name)?”

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