In the Diamer Division of Gilgit-Baltistan, unidentified individuals opened fire on a passenger bus on the Karakoram Highway in front of the Hudur Padi area near Chilas. As a result, eight people were burnt to death, and 16 others sustained injuries.
Rescue sources reported that women and children were among those killed and injured in the gunfire by unknown assailants. The injured have been transported to the Regional Headquarters Hospital Chilas.
The police stated that the targeted passenger bus, with the registration number K2 bus 4647-BLN, was en route to Rawalpindi from Ghazar district when unknown persons fired upon it near Hudoor.
According to the police, the identified victims include Abdul Qayyum, Muhammad Naseer, Kamal Abbas, Aurangzeb, and Mir Alam. Three individuals remain unidentified.
Among the 16 injured, those identified include Shakur Jan, Mazhar, Shabir, Noor Begum, Taj Begum, Islam Gul, Muaz Khan, Safar Ali, Muhammad Ali, Rahmat Jan, Shakeel Ahmed, Nazir, Muhammad Hussain, Muhammad Altaf, Muzamil Ali, and Fida Karim.
Eyewitnesses reported that the assailants fired with heavy weapons, causing a fire to break out.
SSP Diamar Shehryar confirmed the incident, stating that preliminary investigations are underway, and details will be shared with the media once available. He mentioned that he had personally reached the scene, and the vehicles involved have been moved to a safe location in convoy formation. The area has been cordoned off by the police, and further evidence is being collected.
Following the incident, mosques in Chilas made announcements urging people to donate blood for the injured. Many individuals rushed to the Regional Headquarters Hospital in response.
It’s noteworthy that such incidents have occurred in Gilgit-Baltistan before. In August 2012, a similar incident resulted in the death of 12 people. Maulana Sher Zaman, who was injured in the Chilas incident, emphasized the importance of peace for every citizen in Gilgit-Baltistan. He urged people to be brave and cooperative, stating that there is a conspiracy to disrupt peace by spreading religious hatred. Maulana Sher Zaman called on security agencies to take action against those responsible for the bus attack and bring them to justice.
— Sara Mir (@SaraMirGilgity) December 2, 2023
— WE News (@WENewsPk) December 2, 2023