Three women killed in Kashmir tourist bus blast | india | Hindustan Times
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Three women killed in Kashmir tourist bus blast

india Updated: Jul 29, 2012 00:23 IST
Toufiq Rashid
Toufiq Rashid
Hindustan Times
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Three women died and six others were injured in a blast in a tourist bus in Anantnag district of South Kashmir on Saturday.

While police is still investigating the nature of the blast, officials are not ruling out a cylinder blast.

"As of now it seems like a cylinder blast, a blast of similar nature had happened in Baltal as well. But investigation is on and we are looking at other possible angles as well," said SM Sahai, IG of Kashmir Range. Initial reports had suggested that the explosion was caused by a grenade attack.

“The bus was carrying tourists from Mumbai, all passengers were women and was on its way to Pahalgam", said police.

The injured have been shifted to hospitals in Srinagar. The condition of injured tourists is said to be critical.

"The driver of the vehicle told us that the blast happened from inside the bus", said another police official.

While the police maintained that it was gas cylinder explosion, there are conflicting reports about the cause of blast.

An eyewitness injured in the blast said that the group was "not carrying gas cylinders".

"I dont know what happened but we were not carrying any gas cylinders", said Nitta Jidwa, one of the injured admitted in Sher-i-Kashmir Institute of Medical Sciences.

The locals in the area were also not sure about the nature of the blast.

"The bus window panes are intact, There are no smoke marks on the bus. Wonder how can this be a cylinder blast," said a local resident who didn't want to be named.

Police has meanwhile started forensic investigation.

The incident occurred when defence minister AK Antony is in the Kashmir valley on a two day visit to review the security situation of the valley.

According to sources, ASFPA is high on the agenda during the visit. The minister is likely to meet troops deployed in the forward locations.

He will also interact with the state chief minister Omar Abdullah.

The blast came on a day when life in Kashmir is hit by a protest shutdown called by the hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani against the killing of a youth,Hilal Ahmad Dar, in army firing in north Kashmir's Bandipore district.