Terror struck Delhi again on Wednesday morning when a deadly bomb went off at a busy gate of the Delhi high court. It killed 11 people and left 76 others injured. The bomb went off barely 300 metres away from the spot where a minor explosion had taken place on May 25, which was also a Wednesday.
Police officials now say that it could have been a test run for this blast.
Relatives of victims of Delhi High Court bomb blast at RML Hospital in New Delhi.
The high-intensity bomb targeted gate number 5, which is the main entry point for people — mostly litigants — going to the courtrooms. More than 5,000 people visit the high court on an average day. Wednesday is also the public interest litigations day in the court and sees higher than the usual numbers, pointing to a plan behind the attack. Among those killed, nine persons were above the age of 50 years, a 21-year-old law graduate and a woman. How can India fight terror? Does PM's statement assure you? Take poll
The blast was claimed by the Harkat-ul Jihad-al-Islami (HuJI) in an emailed statement, which demanded that Parliament attack accused Afzal Guru be reprieved from hangnig or face attacks on courts.
The government though said it was too early to confirm which group could be involved. The email was still being verified. The Delhi Police, in a late-night development, said they were looking for a Hyundai i10, which they believe could be connected with the case. PC wastes no time, NIA in
The blast took place around 10.14 am — moments before the court was to begin work for the day — shredding limbs and dismembering bodies. The smoke cleared to reveal the ground clotted with blood, the injured screaming with pain and those who were spared in shock. Shaken, country on high alert mode after blast
Eyewitnesses said a man in a white shirt was seen moving suspiciously near counter number 5. He was carrying a briefcase, like the hundreds of lawyers in the court and left the counter within a few minutes. And the blast followed. "The explosion left a deep pit. The entire reception area was reduced to shreds. I could not tell the state of human bodies, as none could be identified,” lawyer Sugriv Dubey said. “I had just entered the court premises when I heard the explosion. People were strewn all over the floor near the gate where they had been waiting in a queue to get their entry passes made,” said advocate RC Chopra.
Home minister P Chidambaram leaves after inspecting the site of a blast outside Delhi high court.
Minutes later, as lawyers and others tried to help up the injured, rescue teams arrived. Several ambulances and fire engines were called in to help and police vans assisted in taking those hurt to local hospitals.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, who received the news of the blast in Dhaka, termed it a “cowardly act”.
“We will deal with it. We will never succumb to the pressure of terrorism,” he said. In the evening, Singh directly drove from the airport to Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital to meet those injured.
The announcement of the blast was made by home minister P Chidambaram in Parliament, where he said that the probe will be done by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) — which for the first time gets to directly investigate a terror case from the start. Chidambaram also told Parliament that Delhi Police had been given intelligence inputs in July about a possible threat to the Capital.
Delhi lieutenant governor, Tejendra Khanna, to whom Delhi Police functionally reports, however told NDTV that the intelligence input “was too general in nature” and not “actionable.”
As events unfolded | Delhi again: 15 years, 13 blasts
Emergency line numbers for:
RML hospital: 23348200 23404446 23743769 23404478
Safdarjung hospital: +91-011-26101925, 91-011-26161960, +91-011-26161960, 91-011-26194690+91-011-26194690, 91-011-26165032, +91-011-26165032, 91-011-26168336, +91-011-26168336
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