The UK, US and Australia have renewed their travel advisories against India, in the wake of Saturday’s blast at a popular tourist hangout in Pune.
Indian government officials, however, dismissed the warnings as “routine fallouts” of the explosion at German Bakery, which killed nine people, including three foreigners. The UK advisory put out on Monday is the most damaging. While the “overall level of travel advice to British citizens has not changed,” it says, “we advise against all or all but essential travel to specific regions of India.”
The advisory goes on to state that, while most of the 7.96 lakh tourists who visit India each year did enjoy a trouble-free stay in financial year 2008-09, consular assistance was provided in 288 cases — and these included 123 deaths, 55 hospitalisations and 415 cases of lost or stolen passports.
“There is a high general threat from terrorism throughout India,” the advisory said. “Recent attacks have targeted public places including those frequented by westerners and expatriates. You should exercise particular caution around major national holidays.”
The US government, meanwhile, told its citizens to be alert to “the continued possibility of terrorist attacks in India” as it “continues to receive information that terrorist groups may be planning attacks in India”.
The Australian government’s websites asked its citizens to “exercise a high degree of caution in India at this time because of the high risk of terrorist activity by militant groups”.
The Jewish community centre in Pune, meanwhile, is still on high alert.