Pakistani security agencies have informed the government that the Taliban have plans to attack foreign election observers, foreign journalists, important candidates and officials of the Election Commission during the May 11 polls, according to a media report on Thursday.
The banned Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan has formed a special force to carry out the attacks, the Urdu daily Dunya quoted a secret document as saying.
The document was prepared on the basis of reports from intelligence agencies. It said that there could be a "major disaster" on election day.
Foreign journalists, election observers and key candidates could be the main targets on election day, the report said. The document was reportedly presented to the government during a meeting of the federal cabinet on May 4. It suggested that banned terrorist groups could strike in Punjab, which had been so far peaceful during the election campaign.
At the meeting, Punjab Home Secretary Shahid Ali Khan briefed the federal cabinet on the threats from the terrorists. The cabinet was informed that nearly 153 people have died in 115 terrorism-related incidents in the past 37 days.
The federal interior secretary too told the cabinet that the Taliban and its affiliated groups have chalked out a secret plan to launch attacks on May 11.
Caretaker Interior Minister Malik Habib told the cabinet that following the military operations in Swat and Malakand, the militants have regrouped in border regions and plans attacks from there. He said the Frontier Corps had been put on high alert to check the movement of militants from the tribal belt to other parts of the country.
The cabinet was informed that Karachi has witnessed terror attacks and various law and order problems after the Taliban sneaked into the country's largest city.
During the last 37 days of the Pakistan People's Party-led government, a total of 66 people had died in 74 incidents of terrorism, the report said.
Image: A paramilitary soldier aims his machine gun after leaving his base to secure polling stations during the upcoming general elections in Nowshera | Photograph: Fayaz Aziz/Reuters