Peshawar: A Pakistani teenager who survived a suicide attack on a top politician nine months ago was killed by a devastating car bombing in a historic market here on Monday.
Muhammad Jamal, 19, could not cheat death a second time as he was killed instantly by the deadly blast at Qissa Khwani Bazar yesterday.
In December last year, Jamal had a narrow escape when a Taliban suicide bomber assassinated senior Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Minister Bashir Bilour. Jamal was standing a short distance from Bilour and sustained injuries that healed after a few months.
Bilour was killed with eight others shortly after addressing an election meeting organised by his Awami National Party ahead of the May 2013 polls.
"Soon after the blast, I saw people lying dead on the street and I realised that I am alive and safe with some injuries to the lower part of my body," Jamal had told the media after last year`s attack.
After he recovered, Jamal was given a contractual job in the Municipal Corporation of Peshawar. However, he lost the job after the ANP was voted out of power.
Jamal filed a case in court for restoration of his job but lost the legal battle.
Yesterday, Jamal left his house find work as a daily wage labourer to support his family. He reached Qissa Khwani Bazar just as the car bomb went off.
He became unconscious due to his serious injuries and died soon after he was taken to Lady Reading Hospital, said a neighbour of Jamal who lives at Dhaki Nalbandi near Qissa Khwani Bazar.
According to witnesses, a youth with a short beard parked the explosives-laden vehicle in Qissa Khwani Bazar and then slipped away from the spot. Though a security guard asked the youth to remove the car, he claimed he would return after buying some ‘kheer’ (rice pudding).
Eighteen members of the family of a security guard of a private school also died in yesterday`s attack. The family had come to Peshawar on a shopping trip.
Touching scenes were also witnessed when 16 coffins were taken out from one home in Matta Mughal Khel village.