KARACHI - ­­Three students of a seminary were killed and nine others wounded in a mysterious explosion in Orangi Town area here on Monday.

Blast occurred in Jamia Masjid-wa-Madrassa Islamia Tahiria, located in Frontier Colony, which is considered a stronghold of militants. At least 25 students were busy in reciting Holy Quran when the explosion came.

Resultantly, over a dozen students were wounded, three of whom succumbed to injuries. Deceased were named Salman Khan, 11, Omar Khan, 12, and Zahid Zada, 14. Nine other wounded students were taken to hospital for treatment.

Police, rangers and other security agencies personnel rushed to the spot along with the rescuers and experts of Bomb Disposal Squad. After initial investigation, police said that deceased Salman had brought the grenade in the class room. He was playing with the grenade when it exploded.

The seminary, owned by Maulana Muhammad Obaidullah, is being run in the area from the last 14 years and it provides both religious and regular school education to around 700 students. Most students are residents of Frontier Colony and its surrounding areas.

Wounded children in their statements to the police said that the teacher had snubbed Salman and asked not to play with the grenade but Salman did not listen to him and finally the grenade exploded. Seminary administration said that they never received any kind of threat by anyone and they are still trying to understand what happened actually.

But seminary administrator Qari Muhammad Faizullah, terming the blast an act of terrorism, said they were unsatisfied with the police investigation. Some witnesses also said that pillion riders lobbed the grenade inside the seminary, while some students said that the pillion riders had handed the grenade to Salman who apparently considered it a toy.

Bomb disposal squad experts said that evidence revealed that it was a China made hand grenade. Experts said it wasn’t as much powerful as compared to Russian made hand grenade, and the fatalities were caused primarily its being a congested place.

This was the third major blast in the city in the week. Orangi SP Mir Sajid Sadozai said that it was an accidental blast that occurred due to the negligence of students and clerics while police is investigating that how the grenade reached inside the seminary. The bodies were handed over to the families after autopsy while a case was yet to be formally registered.

Two suspected Lyari gangsters killed

Two suspected gangsters were killed in an alleged encounter in Lyari area here on Monday. Rangers officials claimed that the encounter took place when the rangers personnel on a tip-off raided the gangsters’ hideout in Lyari area.

On seeing the rangers men, the gangsters opened fired at them troops and tried to escape. Rangers spokesperson claimed that their personnel retaliated and after a brief encounter, two gangsters were killed while their companions managed to escape under the cover of firing.

The bodies of the gangsters were moved to Civil Hospital, Karachi where they were identified as Bilal aka Kalu and Sajjad. The gangsters were associated with the Uzair Baloch gang. They were wanted in murder and rape cases. Weapons including hand grenades were recovered from their possession, he said.

Lyari DSP Murtaza Mirani said Bilal was one of the hardened gangsters of the group. “He was associated with one of the operational commanders of the Uzair’s gang, Shahid Rehman aka Shahid MCB,” he explained. “Bilal was also involved in forcing the residents of Slaughter House to move out during the gang war with the rival group – Baba Ladla in November last year. At that time, he and his group members also subjected various women to rape.”