News / Asia

India Placed on Heightened Security Alert

People rescue an injured person after a bomb blast in Hyderabad, India, Feb. 21, 2013.
People rescue an injured person after a bomb blast in Hyderabad, India, Feb. 21, 2013.
Anjana Pasricha
— In India, the death toll in the twin blasts that devastated the southern city of Hyderabad has risen to 16, and more than 100 people have been wounded. The entire country has been placed on a heightened security alert, as questions have been raised about the government’s failure to respond to warnings of a possible attack.  
 
Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said Friday preliminary investigations show that the two blasts that devastated Hyderabad were caused by improvised explosive devises planted on bicycles.  
 
The first explosion occurred near a bus stand and the second close to a movie theater three minutes later Thursday evening in the bustling commercial district of Dilsukhnagar.     
 
At least three of the victims were students who had come to attend classes at the dozens of coaching institutes located here. Many of those killed and injured were daily wage workers. The area is also home to shops, theaters, restaurants and a vegetable and fruit market.  
 
After a visit to the city Friday morning, Minister Shinde told parliament that “the situation is under control.”
 
“The government is committed to combat such cowardly terror attacks and it shall make all possible efforts to apprehend the perpetrators and masterminds behind the blasts and ensure they are punished as per the law,” said Shinde.
 
Federal and state investigators scoured Hyderabad to get clues. The city is a thriving information technology hub, home to companies such as Google and Microsoft.
 
It also has a sizeable Muslim community.      
 
Opposition parties attacked the government in parliament Friday for ignoring warnings of a possible terror strike.  
 
Home Minister Shinde has said the government had such warnings, but did not have specific information on targets.
 
“General alert was given for last two or three days, we were giving general alert to whole of country," he sid. "If there was threat perception earlier, it will come in the investigation.”
 
The leader of the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party, Sushma Swaraj, said political parties are united in fighting terror.  
 
But she asked why the government had failed to respond to intelligence inputs warning about a possible attack.

The explosions in Hyderabad came as the country was on security alert following the recent hanging of a Kashmiri man, Afzal Guru, for his involvement in a militant attack on parliament in 2001. There is deep anger over his execution in Indian Kashmir, where many believe he did not get a fair trial.
   
In 2011, authorities had said that a bomb blast that killed 17 people outside the High Court in New Delhi was the handiwork of militants who wanted Guru’s death sentence commuted.
 
Indian cities have been the target of terror strikes many times in the past. The worst ever attack killed 160 people in Mumbai in 2008, prompting the federal government to revamp internal security. But analysts have criticized the government for not doing enough.


  • Indian authorities and onlookers are pictured at the site of a bomb blast at Dilshuk Nagar in Hyderabad, India, February 21, 2013.
  • Police examine the site of the explosion at Dilsukh Nagar in Hyderabad, February 21, 2013.
  • Indian medical staff treat the injured at the Omini hospital Kothapet in Hyderabad, February 21, 2013. 
  • People rescue an injured person after a bomb blast in Hyderabad, India, February 21, 2013.
  • The scene of a blast at Dilsukhnagar in Hyderabad, India, February 21, 2013.

You May Like

Uganda Court Annuls Anti-Gay Law

Court says law was passed in parliament without enough members present for a full quorum More

Multimedia Thailand Makes Efforts to Improve Conditions for Migrant Laborers

In Thailand, its not uncommon for parents to bring their children to work; one company, in-collaboration with other organizations, address safety concerns More

In Indonesia, Jihad Video Raises Concern

Video calls on Indonesians to join Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, ISIL More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborersi
X
Steve Herman
August 01, 2014 6:22 PM
Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video In Thailand, Some Efforts to Improve Conditions For Migrant Laborers

Thailand has been facing increasing international scrutiny as a hub of human trafficking and slave labor. Some of the kingdom’s companies are striving to improve working conditions, especially for the millions of migrant laborers from surrounding countries. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Bangkok takes a look at one initiative for children at construction sites
Video

Video Public Raises its Voice on Power Plant Pollution

In the United States, proposed rules to cut pollution from the nation’s 600 coal-fired power plants are generating a heated debate. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, charged with writing and implementing the plan, has already received 300,000 written comments. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, another 1,600 people are lining up this week at EPA headquarters and at satellite offices around the country to give their testimony in person.
Video

Video Information War Rages Alongside Real One in Ukraine

The downing of the Malaysian airliner two weeks ago, and allegations that Russians are shelling Ukrainian troops across the border, have moved the information war swirling around the Ukrainian conflict to a new level. VOA's Al Pessin reports from Kyiv.
Video

Video When Fighting Eases, Gazans Line Up at Bakeries

When there is a lull in the conflict in Gaza, residents who have been hunkered down in their apartments rush out to stock up on food and other necessities. Probably the most important destination is the local bakery. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Gaza City.
Video

Video China Investigates Powerful Former Security Chief

The public in China is welcoming the Communist Party's decision to investigate one of the country's once most powerful politicians, former domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang. Analysts say the move by President Xi Jinping is not only an effort to win more support for the party, but an essential step to furthering much needed economic reforms and removing those who would stand in the way of change. VOA's Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video US-Funded Program Offers Honduran Children Alternative to Illegal Immigration

President Obama and Central American leaders recently agreed to come up with a plan to address poverty and crime in the region that is fueling the surge of young migrants trying to illegally enter the United States. VOA’s Brian Padden looks at one such program in Honduras - funded in part by the United States - which gives street kids not only food and safety but a chance for a better life without, crossing the border.
Video

Video 'Fab Lab' Igniting Revolution in Kenya

The University of Nairobi’s Science and Technology Park is banking on 3-D prototyping to spark a manufacturing revolution in the country. Lenny Ruvaga has more for from Nairobi's so-called “FabLab” for VOA.
Video

Video Immigrant Influx on Texas Border Heats Up Political Debate

Immigrants from Central America continue to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in south Texas, seeking asylum in the United States, as officials grapple with ways to deal with the problem and provide shelter for thousands of minors among the illegal border crossers. As VOA's Greg Flakus reports from Houston, the issue is complicated by internal U.S. politics and U.S. relations with the troubled nations that immigrants are fleeing.

AppleAndroid