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On Ground Zero, the day after

The ghost of Saturday had not quit Beadonpura till Sunday evening. Full 24 hours after the blast, the belongings of the dead, the wounded and the stampeding shoppers still lay on the pavement.

india Updated: Sep 15, 2008 01:17 IST

Gaffar Mkt 6.07 pm

The ghost of Saturday had not quit Beadonpura till Sunday evening. Full 24 hours after the blast, the belongings of the dead, the wounded and the stampeding shoppers still lay on the pavement.

The blood had not been washed away. And the tree near which the blast occurred bore a telltale gash. Unlike the GK-I market and the rest of Karol Bagh, which was bustling as usual, Beadonpura kept its shutters down. It had been cordoned off for the general public.

Relatives of the victims sat on the pavement. Members of the market association and volunteers from a gurudwara served tea and snacks to them. “It is impossible to find parking space here on a Sunday. Just look at it now. Not a single vehicle,” said Harish Kumar, who runs a shop in the market.

Barakhamba 6.34 pm

The Barakhamba Road stretch is usually deserted on Sunday with offices and shops remaining shut. But this Sunday, 24 hours after the blast, the scene was different. The bus stop outside Gopal Das Bhavan was abuzz with activity as TV crews descended at the blast site to capture the mood.

Seeing the cameras, many residents of adjoining areas and curious passersby gathered at the bus stop to have a dekko. “A media circus is on here since the morning. They are catching hold of anyone waiting at the bus stop or coming out of the Metro station to get a reaction,” said Anil Kumar Sharma, who works at Gupta Juice Corner across the road. The traffic police were seen requesting curious onlookers to move from the main road as they were obstructing the flow of traffic.

Central Park 6.35 pm

Ever since Central Park reopened to public early last year, it has been the hub of life in Connaught Place. But its happy atmosphere was shattered by a bomb during rush hour on Saturday. The mood here on Sunday evening was one of forced calm.

The park remained off-limits to the public as policemen and forensics sleuths continued to look for clues inside. The only people seen were curious onlookers who peered through the surrounding grilles.

The park is popular with joggers, and on Sunday some of them decided to follow their routines on the surrounding pavement. “A bomb cannot stop me or change my daily routine,” said Arjun Khosla, a regular jogger.