At least five persons including two girls were killed and 10 injured in a bomb explosion in Imphal East district of Manipur on Monday.
The bomb, suspected to have been fitted to a two-wheeler parked at the busy Sangakpham Bazar under Heingang police station, exploded around 1.50pm. Police suspect militants' involvement in the blast.
State director general of police Y Joykumar Singh said, "We are trying to find out the details. Let the proper examination be conducted first"
The state police chief, however, hinted that it was an IED (improvised explosive device) blast.
No militant group had claimed responsibility for the blast, which occurred around 3 km north of the state police headquarters, at the time of going to press.
A barber and his son and one unidentified person were among those dead.
"There was a very loud blast. We rushed out and saw mutilated bodies scattered around," said Y Ibomcha, a goldsmith in a nearby jewellery shop.
Chief minister O Ibobi Singh and irrigation and flood control minister N Biren and MLA Bijoy Koijam visited the blast site.
The CM and governor Gurbachan Jagat condemned the blast. "Such senseless targeting of innocent citizens is a sheer act of barbarism and must be strongly condemned by all, as such incidents have no place in the modern civilised world," Jagat said.
The CM said, "The director general of police has been directed to launch an intense search to nab the culprits. Inquiry has already begun. I assure that the culprits will be booked and tried under the law."
The state government announced an ex-gratia of Rs 1 lakh to the next of kin of the deceased and Rs 75,000 to persons who have suffered permanent disability.