High alert in Madhya Pradesh, night cinema shows suspended (Lead)

July 27th, 2008 - 11:06 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Bharatiya Janata Party

Bhopal, July 27 (IANS) The Madhya Pradesh government Sunday sounded high alert in the state following blasts in Bangalore and Ahmedabad that left at least 45 people dead. The district administration here as an added security measure has decided to suspend night shows in all cinema halls. “We have decided to suspend night shows in all cinema halls of the state capital as a precautionary measure. Relaxation in exhibiting night shows may be provided after reviewing the situation in a day or two,” Bhopal District Collector Manish Rastogi told IANS.

The central Indian state is known to be a stronghold of the banned Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI). Top leaders of the outfit, including its chief Safdar Nagori, were arrested in the state a few months back.

Meanwhile, a close vigil was maintained at religious places, railway stations, bus yards, cinema houses, malls and shopping complexes, and important government buildings and institutions in the Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled state.

Vehicles checking was being carried out at many place, according to a police official.

“Cops in the state, mainly in the Malwa region which includes Indore and Ujjain, are also looking for the probable SIMI links,” he said.

“The state was already on a high alert following the blasts that rocked Bangalore but in view of the series of explosions in Ahmedabad, the security has been further beefed up, specially in Bhopal, Indore and Ujjain (districts),” director general of police (DGP) S.K. Raut told IANS.

Directives have been issued to all districts’ police heads and railway police officials to heighten security cover in their jurisdiction, he added.

The officials have also been directed to keep the anti-bomb disposal squads, sniffer dog squads and the Rapid Action Force ready to be deployed quickly in case of any eventuality.

The DGP said the police have strengthened their deployment in and around Raja Bhoj airport here, as well as at airports in Indore, Jabalpur, Gwalior and Khajuraho.

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan Saturday night called an emergency meeting and directed the police to maintain high vigil at all important establishments and intensify checking at all sensitive places in the state.

Senior police and civil officers attended the meeting.

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