Pak security agencies warn of ‘vehicle-borne terror attacks’

The Interior Ministry has directed the authorities to maintain vigilance.

Lahore: Pakistan’s National Crisis Management Cell has warned the country’s law enforcement agencies that three vehicles can be used in Vehicle Borne Improvised Explosive Devices (VBIED) attacks, and directed the concerned authorities to take extensive security measures in this regard.

On January 19, the NCMC Islamabad Office issued a letter to the Punjab Home Secretary, Inspector General of Police Punjab, DG Rangers Punjab, Chief Commissioner ICT, and IGP ICT with a subject ‘Threat Alert-25’.

Reportedly, two Toyota Corolla cars and a Tuwllace car “are likely to be used in the Vehicle Borne Improvised Explosive Devices (VBIED) attacks,” The News quoted the letter, as saying.

The Interior Ministry has directed the concerned authorities to maintain extreme vigilance, heightened security and preventive measures to avoid any untoward incident.

It is pertinent to mention that Majalis and processions will be held on the occasion of Chehlum of Hazrat Imam Hussain (AS) on Tuesday (today), the same day when the concluding ceremony of Data Sahib’s Urs is also to be held.

Both events are security-sensitive, and seeing the possibility of the VBIED attacks, secret agencies have warned the police and other law enforcers to remain alert and make extraordinary security arrangements on both occasions.

The Punjab government also called the Rangers on Monday for providing security cover to the participants of Data Sahib’s Urs and the Chehlum of Hazrat Imam Hussain (AS) processions.

The Lahore Police have also been put on high alert, with over 12,000 police officials having been deployed to ensure peace. High-ups of the Lahore Police have ordered special surveillance and checking of all hotels, inns and bus and wagon stands to ward off any possibility of subversion and to ensure law and order on the Chelum and Urs.

On Monday, Capital City Police Officer Aslam Tarin held a special meeting with the Ulema and organisers of Urs, Majalis and processions at the Police Lines, Qila Gujjar Singh, and briefed the participants of security measures.

The CCPO said that all entry and exit points of the city would be covered, and rooftop deployment would be made on different routes. He directed that parking be made at a safe distance, preferably 200 metres away from the venue of the processions and Urs, whereas mobile squads, motorbikes and cars of the Elite Force would also be deployed on the occasions.