Patil condemns Bangalore blasts, promises all help

July 25th, 2008 - 6:55 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Shivraj Patil

New Delhi, July 25 (IANS) Home Minister Shivraj Patil Friday condemned the serial blasts in Bangalore, the country’s IT capital, promising all help to the state government in tracking down the perpetrators. One person was killed and six people were injured when a series of bombs fitted with timer devices went off in the space of 45 minutes.

“I strongly condemn today’s blasts in Bangalore. I convey my sympathies to the affected families and pray for speedy recovery of those injured in the blasts,” he said in a statement.

“The ministry is in close touch with the Karnataka government. Such incidents will not deter the government from pursuing its policy of dealing with anti-national elements in a resolute manner.”

Home secretary Madhukar Gupta said there were seven low-intensity blasts spread over five locations in the city in which a woman had died.

“All the concerned agencies like the bomb disposal squad are on the job. We can’t say now who did it any why. We will need time to figure the details of this incident. Investigations are on and it will take time,” he said.

“Nuts and bolts were planted in the explosives used,” he said.

Gupta refused to say whether state authorities had specific intelligence inputs on the blasts but said that he held a recent review meeting in which Karnataka officials were present.

The first blast took place at Madivala checkpost followed by explosions in three other places, including a park opposite the well-known Mallya Hospital, police commissioner Shankar Bidri said.

The police commissioner said the blasts appeared to be the acts of people who wanted to terrorise the Karnataka capital.

“We will investigate and arrest the suspects,” Bidri told reporters. “We are on complete alert.”

He appealed to people not to panic and to go about with their routine work.

However, most shops and shopping malls immediately shut down as news of the blasts spread.

This is not the first time that the southern state of Karnataks has been hit by such a terror attack. In December 2005, the militant outfit Lashkar-e-Toiba carried out an attack inside the prestigious Indian Institute of Science campus killing a scientist and injuring five others.

Two years back, police foiled a terrorist plot to attack the state legislature building in Bangalore after two suspected terrorists were shot down in Mysore.

The two suspected militants were carrying a laptop computer, a satellite telephone, an AK-47 assault rifle and one Pakistani passport. According to the police they also had the plans of the recently built state assembly building in Bangalore.

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