Explosion at Thai temple fair kills 6, wounds 27 | world | Hindustan Times
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Explosion at Thai temple fair kills 6, wounds 27

world Updated: Feb 01, 2009 10:31 IST

An explosion at an outdoor celebration next to a Buddhist temple in northeastern Thailand killed six people and wounded 27 others, police said on Saturday.

It was not immediately clear what caused the blast but police suspect that one of three men in a drunken brawl may have thrown a hand grenade. There was no indication that the blast was related to Thailand's continuing political strife.

The explosion in Nong Bua Lamphu province, 420 kilometers (260 miles) northeast of Bangkok, occurred just before midnight on Saturday, when hundreds of people were in an open field celebrating the completion of a new temple pavilion with dancing and folk music, said Pol Col Thammajak Kongmongkol.

Three men were seen in a drunken brawl in front of the stage where dancers and singers were performing before the explosion occurred, Thammajak said.

"We suspected one of them might have thrown a hand grenade during the fight but we are still investigating whether it was a bomb or an accident," he said.

Six of the injured were in serious condition with shrapnel wounds, he said.

Buddhist temple fairs on Buddhist holy days and public holidays are common in the predominantly Buddhist country. Several grenades have been lobbed in or near the capital in recent months amid sporadic protests by anti-government protesters and a rival political faction, leaving dozens wounded.