A statue of Pakistan’s founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah has been destroyed by the Baloch militants in a bomb attack in the city of Gwadar in Balochistan province.
According to a media report, the statue, which was installed in June at Marine Drive – considered a safe zone – was blown up by explosives placed beneath the statue on Sunday morning.
The statue was completely destroyed in the blast, the report said.
BBC Urdu reported that Babgar Baloch, a spokesman for the banned militant organisation Baloch Republican Army, claimed the responsibility for the blast on Twitter.
Balochistan has been witnessing a spate of low-level violence for several years.
The report quoted Gwadar deputy commissioner Major (retd) Abdul Kabir Khan as saying that the matter was being investigated at the highest level,
Khan said the militants, who destroyed Jinnah’s statue by planting explosives, entered the area as tourists.
Informing that no arrest has been made so far, Khan said the investigation will be completed in a day or two.
“We are looking into the matter from all angles and the culprits will be caught soon,” Khan said as quoted by BBC Urdu.
“The demolition of Quaid-e-Azam’s statue in #Gwadar is an attack on Ideology of Pakistan. I request authorities to punish the perpetrators in the same way as we did with those behind the attack on Quaid-e-Azam residency in Ziarat,” tweeted former home minister of Balochistan and current Senator Sarfraz Bugti.
It has been reported that the Baloch militants in 2013 blasted a 121-year-old building used by Jinnah at Ziarat and raked it with gunfire, triggering a fire that blazed for four hours, destroying furniture and memorabilia.
Pakistan’s founder Jinnah spent the last days of his life there as he suffered from tuberculosis and it was later declared a national monument.
Jinnah, who was born on December 25, 1876, served as the leader of the All-India Muslim League from 1913 until Pakistan’s creation on August 14, 1947.
Jinnah then served as Pakistan’s first Governor-General until his death in 1948.