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Bangladeshis Questioned About Jaipur Blasts


Indian authorities say they have detained about 40 people, mostly Bangladeshis, in their investigation of Tuesday evening's serial bomb blasts in Jaipur. The terrorist attack killed more than 60 people. A previously unknown group is claiming responsibility while officials still speculate foreign-linked Islamic militants may be the culprits. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from New Delhi.

Indian investigators say they have taken dozens of people into custody for questioning, mainly Bangladeshi migrant workers, as they try to determine who planted eight bombs in Rajasthan's capital of Jaipur. But officials say no one has been arrested and most of those questioned have already been released.

A previously unknown group, calling itself Indian Mujahideen, claimed responsibility in an e-mail and video sent to media. Investigators on Thursday said they are skeptical about the authenticity of the messages.

Central government authorities have proclaimed that foreign-based terror groups with a track record of targeting Indian cities are most likely responsible.

The chief minister of Rajasthan, Vasundhara Raje, says the investigation is hampered by a lack of coordination among Indian authorities.

"It's very, very important that we share information with each other, that a common cell be put up for all states where there is a data base," he said. "Would you believe in India today we do not have a [terrorism] data base? There has to be a data base for all these people."

Home Minister Shivraj Patil, along with Congress Party chief Sonia Gandhi, on Thursday visited the blast sites and a hospital where more than 100 of the wounded are being treated.

Patil praised the people of Rajasthan for bravely facing the unprecedented act of terrorism in Jaipur.

Patil says the government will do whatever it can to help the victims. And he commended Jaipur's citizens for their restraint.

The famed tourist destination is renowned as a walled historic city where Hindus, Muslims and followers of other religions have long lived in harmony. Authorities say they believe the attackers intended to provoke violence between Hindus and Muslims.

While calm prevails and Jaipur remains under curfew for a second day, several foreign players of the Rajasthan Royals cricket team told Indian media they are contemplating returning home in wake of the blasts.

The India Premier League team is scheduled to play its next match in Jaipur on Saturday. The league has announced the match against the Bangalore Royal Challengers will go ahead but as a sign of respect for the victims there will be no cheerleaders, music or other entertainment at the stadium.

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