Wah cantt - Like other parts of the country, pall of gloom looms over Taxila and Wah Cantonment on the second consecutive day on Wednesday as people from different walks of life plunged into deep mourning over the incident and they expressed their solidarity and sympathies with the grieved families who lost their kids in one of the most tragic terrorist acts of human history.

The national flag was lowered to half mast at all the important buildings, government offices and state-run educational institutions in connection with the three days mourning announced by the government, as the country has never seen the kind of callous orchestration of an attack on defenceless children in a school.

As everyone was gloomy over the deaths of around 140 innocent lives, mostly students, civil society came with candlelight vigils at the important places to condemn the incident, pay tribute to the students who fell prey to terrorism in their thirst of knowledge and commandos who died in the line of duty as well as to express their sympathies with the families of the deceased. Different NGOs organised candlelight vigils in different parts of the city on Wednesday. The Voice, an NGO, organised candlelight vigil at Dharmarajika Stupa where as many as 149 candles were lit in the memory of those students and their teachers who were gunned down by terrorists in a military run school in Peshawar on Tuesday. People from different walks of life including representatives of different NGOs, students, politicians, journalists and social workers joined the global outcry and organised a candlelight vigil to condemn the incident. Asim Meer, President of the NGO which organised the event, said that this was the place dated back to 3rd Century BC where revival of Buddhism was initiated by Great Ashoka. He said the site was selected for offering prayers and lighting candles because Emperor Ashoka of the Mauryan Dynasty had selected this place for revival of peace and tolerance and other reason was that the victims also included Buddhists. The Stupa was a source of inspiration and a place of attraction from the beginning of the Buddhist religion and was later reconstructed during the time of King Kanisha in the 5th Century AD. The Dharmarajika Stupa and monastery were probably the earliest in Pakistan. Ashoka founded the Dharma Dharmarajika Stupa near Taxila and the Chinese pilgrim Huein Tsang mentions about 1,000 monasteries in Gandhara alone. He termed the terrorists involved in the incident as Boko Haram of the region who played with the lives of the innocent students.

Meanwhile, a candlelight vigil was also arranged by the Christian community at the chapel of Mission Eye Hospital in which a large number of people including doctors, nurses and other staff members also participated.