Major incidents of terrorist violence in Pakistan, 1988-2004
October 1: At least 31 people are killed and 75 others sustain injuries in a
suspected suicide bombing at a Shia mosque at Sialkot in the Punjab province
during the Friday prayers.
September 28: Four soldiers are killed and five others sustain injuries
during a remote-controlled landmine explosion in the Shakai area of South
August 31: Four people, including three intelligence officers, are killed
and 15 others sustained injuries during a bomb explosion at a sweet shop in
Qalat, 140km south of Quetta, capital of Balochistan province.
August 16: Five paramilitary troops are killed and 12 others sustain
injuries in two attacks near the Sui gas fields of Balochistan province.
August 8: At least 10 people, including a three-year-old boy, are killed and
50 others sustain injuries in two bomb explosions near the Binoria mosque
and seminary in Karachi.
August 2: Baluchistan Chief Minister Jam Muhammad Yousaf escapes unhurt when
his cavalcade was attacked by unidentified terrorists near Surab, about 180
kilometers south west of Quetta. A constable and one of the attackers were
reportedly killed and three persons sustained injuries during the incident.
August 1: Five soldiers and a civilian are killed when three unidentified
terrorists attacked their vehicle at Khuzdar in the Baluchistan province.
July 30: Seven persons, including the attacker, are killed in a suicide bomb
attack on the car of Finance Minister and Prime Minister-designate, Shaukat
Aziz, at village Jaffar in Fateh Jang.
June 10: At least 11 persons, including seven Army personnel and three
police personnel, are killed and 12 others sustain injuries when a group of
seven to eight unidentified terrorists ambush the convoy of Corps Commander,
Karachi, Lt. Gen. Ahsan Saleem Hyat, near the Clifton Bridge in Karachi.
May 31: At least 24 worshippers are killed and 34 others sustain injuries
when a high-intensity bomb explodes during the evening prayers at a Shia
mosque situated on the MA Jinnah Road in Karachi.
May 30: The pro-Taliban Sunni cleric and chief of Binoria mosque in Karachi,
Mufti Nizamuddin Shamzai, is killed and his son, nephew and driver are
wounded, when armed men ambushed their vehicle in front of the mosque.
May 26: Two persons are killed and at least 33 others, mostly police and
media personnel, are wounded when two car bombs explode in succession near
the Pakistan-American Cultural Centre (PACC) and the residence of the US
Consul-General in Karachi.
May 7: At least 15 Shia worshippers and a suspected suicide bomber are
killed and over 200 persons sustain injuries when a powerful bomb exploded
at Hyderi Mosque, situated within the premises of the seminary Sindh
Madrasa-tul-Islam, in the Mithadar area of Karachi.
May 3: Three Chinese engineers working on a sea-port project are killed and
eleven persons, including nine Chinese nationals, sustain injuries in a car
bomb attack near Gwadar, about 500 kilometers west of Karachi, near the
border with Iran.
March 22: At least 13 soldiers are killed and 22 others wounded as
terrorists ambush a Pakistan Army convoy near the town of Wana in South
March 2: At least 47 persons are killed and more than 150 wounded when a
procession of the Shia sect is attacked by rival Sunni extremists at Liaquat
Bazaar in Quetta, capital of Baluchistan.
February 28: A suicide bomber is killed and four worshippers sustain
injuries in an attack on a mosque in the Satellite Town area of Rawalpindi.
December 25: At least 18 persons are killed and 40 others are injured during
a second assassination attempt in less than two weeks on President Pervez
Musharraf in the Jhanda Chichi area of Rawalpindi.
December 14: President Pervez Musharraf escapes an assassination attempt
when an explosive device went off at the Chaklala Bridge near Jhanda Chichi
in Rawalpindi approximately two minutes after the departure of his convoy.
However, no loss of life or injuries was reported.
October 6: Maulana Azam Tariq, leader of the outlawed Sunni group
Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP) and Member of National Assembly, is
assassinated along with four others in Islamabad.
October 3: At least six persons, including four employees of the Space and
Upper Atmospheric Research Commission (SUPARCO) and one army personnel, are
killed and eight persons injured in an ambush while they were going to a
mosque for offering Friday prayers in the Mauripur area of Karachi.
October 2: At least 12 Al Qaeda terrorists are killed and 18 others arrested
during an operation launched by the Pakistan Army in the remote South
Waziristan Agency (SWA), close to the Afghanistan border. Two Pakistani
soldiers were also reportedly killed and two others injured during the
July 4: At least 53 persons are killed and 57 others injured as three armed
terrorists, including a suspected suicide bomber, attack a Shiite mosque in
Quetta, capital of the Southwestern Baluchistan province, during the Friday
June 8: In a sectarian attack, 13 trainee police personnel belonging to the
local Hazara community of the Shia sect are killed and eight others injured
at Sariab Road in Quetta.
February 28: Two police personnel guarding the United States Consulate in
Karachi are killed and five others injured by an unidentified gunman.
February 27: Three persons are killed in suspected sectarian violence in
January 31: Unidentified assailants kill a prayer leader and a worshipper
and injure two others after opening indiscriminate fire inside a mosque in
January 15: Two MQM-A activists, including a unit in-charge, are killed and
another injured by two unidentified assailants within the precincts of
Jauharabad Police Station in Karachi.
December 25: Three women are killed and 15 persons injured in a grenade
attack on the United Presbyterian Church near Sialkot, Punjab province.
December 21: Two persons are killed and seven others, including two security
force personnel, are injured in a bomb explosion in a bus in Hyderabad,
December 7: Four members of a family are killed and seven more injured in a
landmine explosion in Shahkas village, 25km west of Peshawar.
December 4: Three persons are killed in a bomb blast at the Macedonian
Honorary Consul General's office in Karachi.
November 15: Two persons are killed and nine more injured in a bomb
explosion inside a passenger bus in Hyderabad, Sindh.
November 1: Unidentified terrorists killed two police personnel in Quetta.
A Shia doctor is killed by an unidentified assailant in the Upper Mall
October 16: Three-parcel bomb explosions cause injuries to eight police
personnel and a civilian in Karachi
September 25: Seven persons are killed and three others injured in a
terrorist attack on a Christian welfare organisation's office--the Idara
Amn-O-Insaaf (Institute for Peace and Justice) in Karachi.
August 23: MQM-H chairman Afaq Ahmed and secretary general Amir Khan survive
an assassination attempt in Karachi.
August 9: Three women and a terrorist are killed and 24 persons are injured
as terrorists attack the John C. Heinrich Memorial chapel in the Mission
Hospital at Taxila.
August 5: Six persons are killed and four others injured in a terrorist
attack at a Christian missionary school in Jhika Gali, Murree.
July 20: Mir Ghulam Qadir Baloch, Baluchistan National Movement (BNM)
leader, shot dead in Turbat Bazaar, Quetta.
July 13: 12 persons, including seven Germans, are injured in a terrorist
attack at an Archaeological site in Mansehra.
July 3: Four Al Qaeda terrorists and two security force personnel are killed
and two police personnel injured in an encounter near Jarma bridge in Kohat.
June 28: A senior official of the proscribed Shia group Tehreek-e-Jaferia
Pakistan (TJP) is killed in Multan in a suspected sectarian attack.
June 17: Three Shia worshippers are killed in a sectarian attack outside a
mosque in Multan.
June 14: 10 persons, including five women, are killed and 51 others injured
in a car-bomb blast outside the US Consulate in Karachi.
June 9: Front-ranking leader of Baluchistan National Party (BNP), Mir Aslam
Gichki is assassinated along with an associate in Mashkey, Quetta.
May 24: A Sunni Tehreek (ST) cadre is killed and four others injured as
unidentified gunmen attack an ST rally in Majeed Colony, Karachi.
May 8: Nine French nationals and five Pakistanis, including a suspected
suicide bomber, are killed and 34 persons injured in a bomb explosion inside
a bus opposite Sheraton Hotel, Karachi.
May 7: Noted religious scholar Ghulam Murtaza Malik, his driver and a police
personnel are killed at Gulshan-e-Iqbal in Lahore.
May 6: Three persons--principal of a government institute, his driver and
assistant, are killed in an ambush in Al-Falah, Karachi.
March 16: Five SSP cadres are killed near Merik Sial in Jhang by a group of
10 unidentified assailants.
December 21: Interior Minister Moinuddin Haider's brother is killed in a
suspected terrorist attack in Karachi.
December 13: Nineteen persons are injured in a bomb blast at a residential
area in Orangi Town, Karachi.
November 4: Five persons, including a former District Council chairman, are
killed and two more injured in firing by unidentified gunmen near Mehargam,
October 28: A policeman and 17 Christians, including five children, are
killed and nine others injured as six unidentified gunmen open
indiscriminate fire inside a church in Model Town, Bahawalpur.
January 28: Masked gunmen ambush a school van, killing five Sunni Muslims
and wounding three others.
November 23: Anwar Ali Akhunzada, the central general secretary of TJP in
Peshawar, is assassinated by the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ).
September 19: Twelve persons are killed in a bomb explosion in Islamabad
July 17: Ten persons are killed in Hyderabad train blast.
March 28: Seven persons are killed and 16 others injured in a bomb blast at
a crowded market in the frontier town of Torkham near Afghanistan.
February 5: Eight persons are killed and 40 others injured in a bomb
explosion in a train at Hyderabad.
January 17: Eight persons are killed and 31 others injured in a bomb
explosion at a bus stop in Karachi.
May 4: Members of the Baluchistan Students Federation (BSF) hijack a
Pakistan International Airlines aircraft and attempt to land in India.
November 12: Two unidentified gunmen kill four U.S. auditors from Union
Texas Petroleum Corporation and their Pakistani driver near Sheraton Hotel
November 19: A suicide bomber drives a vehicle into the Egyptian Embassy
compound in Islamabad, killing at least 16 and injuring 60 persons.
September 23: Four gunmen open indiscriminate fire at a Fajr congregation at
Al Khair mosque in Multan, killing 23 worshippers and wounding 50 others.
January 18: Sipah-e-Sahaba Chief Maulana Ziaur Rehman Farooqi is killed
along with 18 other persons in a bomb blast in the Lahore Sessions Court.
March 8: Two unidentified gunmen kill two U.S. diplomats and injured a third
November 5: 15 persons are killed and 17 others injured as
Tehreek-e-Nafaz-e-Shariat-e-Mohammadi (TNSM) cadres and security forces
clash in the NWFP region.
May 11: MQM chairman Azim Ahmed Tariq is assassinated in Karachi.
December 11: The Iranian Counsel General in Lahore, Sadeq Ganji, is
February 23: Maulana Haq Nawaz Jhangvi, one of the founder members of
Sipah-e-Sahaba Pakistan (SSP) is assassinated by suspected Shia terrorists.
August 6: Allama Husseini, leader of Tehreek-e-Jaferia Pakistan (TJP), is
killed in Peshawar.
Post by surreal_ravi
WORLD POLICY JOURNAL
ARTICLE: Volume XIX, No 3, Fall 2002
The Struggle for India's Soul
Mira Kamdar *
I will not buy anything from any Muslim shopkeeper
I will not use those traitors' hotels or their garages
Boycott movies casting Muslim heroes heroines
Never work in Muslims' offices and do not employ Muslims
- Pledge distributed in Gujarat by the Vishwa Hindu Parishad1
My immigrant Gujarati father is both a liberal Democrat and a
supporter of Hindu fascism. This is not as unusual as one might think.
According to one of the central tenets of the Hindu far-right ideology
known as Hindutva, India is not only the fatherland, pitribhumi, of
Hindus, Jains and-more problematically-Sikhs, it is also their
punyabhumi, their holy land.2 Because the birth-places of Islam,
Christianity, Zoroastrianism, and Judaism are outside India, Muslims,
Christians, Parsis, and Jews-no matter how many hundreds or thousands
of years they may have lived in the country-are seen by Hindu
extremists as aliens. My father, a Jain, identifies completely with
I grew up in a home where Martin Luther King was venerated, the civil
rights movement championed, the Kennedys (Jack and Bobby) worshiped,
and a "McGovern for President" sign picked up from where it had been
knocked down the previous night and reimplanted on our front lawn
every October morning in 1972. We children learned early on to view
racism as a disease that could be eliminated, if only the same zeal
were applied to it as had been applied to the eradication of smallpox.
Even our parents' "mixed marriage"-my mother is Danish American-was to
be understood not so much as a love affair as a salvo in the war on
racism. The personal was consciously political in my childhood home.
My father never hesitated to express his outrage at racial injustice,
whether in the exalted form of British imperialism or in the more
everyday, American redneck, good ol' boy tradition. Whenever anyone
challenged him about something he wanted to do, he was fond of
retorting, "Why not? I'm free, white, and over 21 aren't I?" daring
you to question his whiteness. More boldly, and more rarely, he would
allude to the Nazis' linkage of Indians with Germans in one vast Aryan
family. I always took these remarks to be tongue-in-cheek observations
that no one, least of all my father, really believed, remarks designed
more to provoke than to express his true views.
So it has been a great and sad shock to me to realize that my father,
who loved Martin Luther King, hates Muslims. He hates them blindly,
viscerally, categorically. In most other respects, my father is a
rational man: gifted in mathematics, and a highly trained aeronautical
engineer who worked, among other things, on the Apollo missions. Yet,
in any discussion where Muslims, the Middle East, Bosnia (not to
mention Pakistan) comes up, he is wont to fly into an apoplectic rage,
turn red in the face, shout until spit begins to pool at the sides of
his mouth, shake his fists. The culmination of these fits is always
the same. He bends over, seizes the cuff of the right leg of his
pants, and pulls it up to show off a series of diagonal dents marching
up his shin, scars from a back-alley encounter decades ago with a gang
of bicycle-chain-wielding Muslim youths. "This is what Muslims did to
me! This is what Muslims do!" My father is a heart patient who
recently underwent a quadruple bypass operation. "Dad! Dad! Calm
down," we soothe, and move the conversation into safer waters.
Until quite recently, I believed my father's hatred of Muslims to be a
particular affliction, the result of an attack whose emotional scars
go far deeper than the physical ones. I realized in 1992-93, when
Hindu-Muslim riots raged throughout India in the wake of the
destruction of the Babri Masjid (mosque) in Ayodhya by Hindu
militants, that my father's views were, if not a universal plague, at
least a widespread distemper.
A decade later in 2002, it has become chillingly clear that
Hindu-Muslim conflict in India is no longer-if it ever was-a natural
malady, the unfortunate inheritance of an ancient people beset by too
much history and too many conquerors: it has become a weapon of
political engineering wielded by Hindu militant leaders bent on
transforming India from the secular democracy its founders envisioned
55 years ago into a Hindu religious state, sanitized of Muslims and
other minority groups. This, grossly stated, is the core ideology of
Hindutva: to unify India's Hindus-otherwise divided by caste, class,
region, language, and sect-into a dominant political force that can
restore modern India to an essentially Hindu past from which it has
Hindutva is the ideology of the Sangh Parivar, an amalgam of groups
which includes the Bharatiya Janata Party, or BJP, now India's ruling
party; the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, or RSS; the Vishwa Hindu
Parishad, or VHP; and the Bajrang Dal. The BJP plays the role of the
moderate, mainstream entity, friendly to multinational capital and
mature enough to lead India onto the global stage of the great powers,
against the RSS's frankly fascist youth corps activities, the VHP's
worldwide propaganda machine, and the Bajrang Dal's street-level
enforcement and terror gangs.
State-Sponsored Terror in Gujarat
The extent to which these parties have succeeded in hijacking India's
pluralistic democracy was made abundantly clear earlier this year. On
February 27, a train carrying Hindu militants back from a trip to
Ayodhya, where they had gone to press anew for the construction of a
temple on the site of the razed Babri mosque, stopped in the small
town of Godhra, near Ahmedabad, in Gujarat. What happened next is not
entirely clear, except for the fact that a Muslim mob set fire to the
train, killing 58 people, mostly women and children. Everyone expected
some kind of act of revenge. Attacks and counterattacks between Hindus
and Muslims are nothing new in Gujarat. No one doubted that some
Muslims were going to pay with their lives for the Hindu lives lost.
But few anticipated what happened next.
For about 24 hours, there was calm. And then, almost simultaneously,
in different localities, in both urban and rural areas across Gujarat,
a systematic wave of terror against the Muslim population began.
Truckloads of Hindus, mostly young men- many sporting headbands in
saffron, the Hindu sacred color-headed for Muslim neighborhoods. They
were armed not only with homemade gasoline bombs, trishurs (the
trident-shaped weapon associated with the god Shiva), and knives but
also, in some cases, with printouts from government computer databases
listing the names and addresses of Muslims and Muslim-owned
businesses. Some of the young Hindus even had cell phones-the better
to keep in touch with their handlers-and bottles of water. They
embarked on a rampage of looting, arson, rape, torture, and murder
that left thousands dead and many more thousands homeless.3
Muslim homes and businesses were looted, and then the buildings and
often the dismembered bodies of the former occupants were set on fire.
Neighboring Hindu homes and businesses were spared. In many
localities, the police, when they didn't simply turn a blind eye to
the attacks, were seen helping the attackers identify their targets.
With few exceptions, no protection was offered to those terrified
Muslims who, in desperation, begged the police for help. According to
Human Rights Watch, the general response of the police was: "We have
no orders to save you." The savagery of the attacks- which routinely
included dismemberment, gang rape, beheadings, dousing bodies with
petrol and burning them so as to render them unrecognizable,
liquidating entire families, including women, children, babies, and
fetuses ripped from the womb- was all the more shocking for their
well-organized and premeditated execution. It was evident that state
and local authorities not only did nothing to stop the violence but
were actually complicit in orchestrating the attacks.4
Clearly, the violence that wracked Gujarat earlier this year was not
of the same variety as in past Hindu-Muslim riots in India. This was
no spontaneous eruption of Hindu righteous outrage too deep to be
suppressed, as the VHP would have it. Neither was it simply a settling
of scores by rival gangs, nor an isolated bid by a rogue politician to
garner favors and intimidate foes. This was ethnic cleansing, designed
by Hindu extremists to purge Gujarat of Muslims. "Go back to
Pakistan!" was a common taunt hurled at Muslims who have lived in
India for generations. The attacks in Gujarat recalled quite starkly
the state-facilitated, retributive attacks on Sikhs in New Delhi
following the assassination of former prime minister Indira Gandhi by
her Sikh bodyguards in 1984. Scores of Muslim monuments were razed
and, in some cases, the sites were paved over within 24 hours so as to
insure that they would not be rebuilt.
Another chilling aspect was the participation in the violence of large
numbers of white-collar, educated men, and the presence of
middle-class women, who screamed filthy insults at the Muslims and
cheered on male attackers as they targeted members of the Muslim
elite: business owners, academics, lawyers, former legislators. In
Vadodara, the highly respected Muslim physics professor J. S.
Bandukwala's home was ransacked and burned, and the famous
contemporary artists Gulam Muhammed and Nilima Sheikh had to flee
their home in Pratapgunj, the pleasant, tree-lined housing complex for
professors at Maharajah Sayajirao University. Never in previous riots
had such enclaves been threatened. In Ahmedabad, Ehsan Jafri, a poet
and former Congress Party MP, was burned alive at his home, along with
several members of his family, despite a series of desperate cell
phone calls to the authorities for help.
For the first time as well, large numbers of Adivasi tribals
participated in the attacks. (India terms indigenous ethnic groups who
do not traditionally practice Hinduism or any other of the country's
main religions and who have no place in the Hindu caste hierarchy
"tribals.") They were trucked into target areas and plied with liquor
to put them in the right ransacking mood. For some years, the VHP and
other allied groups of the Sangh Parivar have been working to convert
the tribals, who have their own animistic beliefs, to Hinduism and
enlist them in anti-Muslim efforts. In Gujarat, Adivasis were
reportedly used against the Muslim moneylenders to whom they were
indebted, in order to eliminate the competition for local Hindu