Ahmedabad limping back to normalcy

July 28th, 2008 - 10:04 pm ICT by IANS  

Ahmedabad, July 28 (IANS) Forty-eight hours after a series of bombs ripped through Ahmedabad, outsiders are still shying away from the city even though life here was slowly limping back to normalcy. The flights from Delhi to Ahmedabad were flying with only a few passengers aboard and the airport here bore a deserted look.

“We have been flying at nearly 40 percent less than our capacity. Many passengers are flying to Mumbai,” said a crewmember of a Delhi-Ahmedabad-Mumbai flight.

Many were keeping away from the city for safety reasons.

“We have just returned from a vacation in Delhi. I have to drive down to Gandhidham (in Kutch), which is about four and a half hours away from Ahmedabad. I had planned to go for shopping in Ahmedabad but seeing the situation, it is out of question,” said Malini Patel as her daughter-in-law looked on.

“The airport is very less crowded than the normal days,” she added.

Jolted by the terror attacks of Saturday, which left over 50 dead and 200 injured, the whole police machinery has swung into action. Almost at every nook and corner of the city, policemen and traffic police personnel outnumbered residents, who stayed put in their houses.

Shops downed their shutters and malls remained closed as the city tried to gather itself together after the bomb blasts battered it.

“The people are a little panicked. Even though schools and colleges were opened today (Monday), they were closed down pretty early. Some of the shops have opened but not in full strength,” said Vinod, a resident of old city.

“This city is yet to bounce back to normalcy,” he added.

Others see a ray of hope.

“At least people are coming out even though in small numbers. The day the bombs exploded, we and policemen were the only people out on roads at night in a city which has a vibrant night life,” said auto rickshaw driver Ramesh.

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