Indian police investigate nature of Varanasi blast (2)

15:08, December 08, 2010      

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"There are about 32 other people who have been admitted to various hospitals. One person is critical and has been admitted to Heritage Hospital," Rajiv Pratap Singh stated.

"Some of the injured have been taken to the district hospital in Varanasi. A few have been taken to the Banaras Hindu University Hospital too," the Inspector General added.

Eye witnesses said that the blast took place when thousands of devotees had assembled at the ghat (bank of river Ganga) for the Ganga Aarti (prayer).

"There was a loud explosion from the north side. This happened during the time of the Aarti. The explosion was deafening," Ram Kishan, a devotee and a participant in the prayer procession, said.

According to sources in the local administration, seven to eight people were injured in the blast but the numbers increased because a railing at the ghat broke leading to a small stampede, which injured about 15 people.

Meanwhile, terrorist outfit Indian Mujahideen claimed responsibility for the blast through an email message to local media.

The group was accused of staging an attack at the German Bakery in the western Indian city of Pune in February this year, which killed several people, including foreigners.

Source: Xinhua
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