serial blasts in Ahmedabad

26 07 2008

National Security Guards and expert teams have been rushed to Gujarat.

SHOCK AND AWW: National Security Guards and expert teams have been rushed to Gujarat.

Ahmedabad: Seventeen low-intensity blasts rocked Ahmedabad on Saturday evening killing 15 people and injuring over 100 others.

Gujarat Urban Development Nitin Patel confirmed that 15 people have died in the blasts.

The blasts happened in Maninagar, Sarkej, Isanpur, Narol circle, Bapunagar, Hatkeshwar, Sarangpur Bridge, Sarkhej, Odhav, Sardar Patel Market, Civil Hospital, Juhapura, Ambur Tower Building and Raipur.

Except for the blast in Juhapura, all others took place in eastern part of the city and within a radius of 10 kilometer.

The first blast took place in Maninagar, which is the Assembly constituency of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi. According to initial reports the bomb in Maninagar was planted in a bicycle.

There was a second blast in Maninagar area inside the LG Hospital premises below a red-coloured car, which caught fire. There was another blast in Vadilal Sarabhai Hospital.

There were two blasts in Sarkhej, too. While the first blast took place in an AMTS bus, the other targetted Sangam theatre.

In Bapunagar the blast took place outside the railway station while one of the blast took place inside a bus. The blasts occurred within a span of 70 minutes between 1830 hrs IST and 1940 hrs IST. Some of the bombs were hidden in tiffin boxes.

A black coloured Hero Honda Splendor motorcycle was found abandoned near the blast site in Maninagar.

Ahmedabad railway station has been sealed.

Some of the blasts took place in communally sensitive areas of the city. CNN-IBN’s Editor-in-Chief Rajdeep Sardesai reports that the blasts were aimed at creating panic and not really at causing heavy causalities.

The Intelligence Bureau had received an e-mail from a little known terror group called Indian Mujaheedin about a possible attack, reports Sardesai.

Union Minister of State for Home Sri Prakash Jaiswal said, “The blasts seem to be along the lines of yesterdays Bangalore blasts. It is a conspiracy to unsettle the country. All metros are on a high alert.”

An emergency meeting is going on at Modi’s residence and the Chief Minister is likely to visit the blast areas soon.

Coordinator of the United Christian Forum for Human Rights Father Cederic Prakash appeals for calm.

“I sympathise with those affected. Every single member of civil society should maintain peace and communal harmony,” Prakash says.

The serial bomb blasts in Ahmedabad come just a day after a series of blasts rocked Karanataka capital Bangalore. In Bangalore, too, nine low-intensity blasts had taken place on Friday afternoon killing two people and injuring six others.