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HindustanTimes Sat,23 Aug 2014

Hyderabad Blasts

Centre alerts had nothing specific; Shinde under fire
HT Correspondents, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, February 22, 2013
First Published: 01:14 IST(22/2/2013)
Last Updated: 12:32 IST(22/2/2013)

Central intelligence agencies sent out two all-India alerts on February 19th and 20th warning of the possibility of attacks as a retaliation to the hanging of Afzal Guru, although there was no specific intelligence pertaining to the twin blasts in Hyderabad.

When Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde referred to the information the government had for the last two days, he was referring to the two alerts which had been sent to all states.

Shinde is now being criticised for the lack of actionable intelligence.

"The Indian Mujahideen and SIMI are likely to carry out attacks,'' an IB alert warned. The alerts were sent to all director generals of police.

Government sources said the alert followed technical intelligence gathered by the agencies in the days after the 9 February secret hanging of Afzal Guru. Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba had promptly warned of attacks against India to avenge the execution.

Conflicting reports are emerging about the possible Afzal Guru connection to the blasts.

"Several terrorist organisations have been threatening revenge after Afzal was hanged on February 9 and there was enough wireless chatter that pointed to a revenge attack,'' a home ministry official said.

Meanwhile some have expressed reservations saying that Thursday's blasts were unlikely to be linked to Afzal's hanging, particularly since the logistics of organizing the blast would take more than a few days or weeks.

However, the lack of specific information, has raised serious questions of the security establishment's preparedness, especially after the Mumbai attacks on 26/11, when an effort was made to beef up the security appartus.


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