Varanasi is as important to Hindus as Makka is to Muslims.Muslim terror groups Lashkar-e-Toiba,Hizbul Mujahideen and Jammat-e-Islami has no respect for Hindu holy sites
New Delhi, March 7, 2006
A series of explosions rocked the ancient city of Varanasi on Tuesday evening.According to initial reports, 20 people were killed and at least 60 people were injured, 10 of them seriously.The Government has appealed to all citizens to maintain peace. The Home Ministry has convened an emergency meeting.The first blast took place inside famous Sankatmochan temple adjacent to Kashi Vishwanath temple when it was teeming with devotees at the evening \"aarti\" time killing four persons on the spot.Minutes later, another blast took place at the holding area of platform number one of the Varanasi Cantonment railway station when Delhi-bound Shivaganga Express was stationary.
Terror hits Varanasi, 20 killed
The sources have also said that the hand of Lashkar-e-Taiba was suspected behind the blasts.
Posted online: Tuesday, March 07, 2006 at 1846 hours IST
Updated: Tuesday, March 07, 2006 at 2150 hours IST
Varanasi, March 7: Terror struck Varanasi on Tuesday evening when two bomb blasts in quick succession rocked the Sankatmochan shrine and the cantonment railway station killing at least 20 people and injuring over 50, some of them seriously.
The worst hit was the railway station where 14 people were killed and 30 injured in a powerful explosion outside the waiting room at 6:25 pm on platform one where Delhi-bound Shivaganga Express train was stationary, official sources said.
Minutes before this, a bomb went off at the famous Sankatmochan Temple when it was teeming with devotees. At least six persons were killed and 25 others injured in the explosion.
All the injured were rushed to various hospitals in the city, many of them taken by good Samaritans, as police cordoned off the sites.
Immediately after the blasts, police was put on high alert throughout the country with security being beefed up at places of worship, vital installations and government buildings. The Centre also issued an advisory to all the states to take steps to ensure law and order and to specially see that there was no communal flare up.
The blast at the railway station was so powerful that it created a one-foot deep crater and smashed window panes and wooden structures. The area was splattered with blood and scattered with body parts and passengers belongings soaked in blood.
There was unconfirmed report of a second blast at the railway station.
Four live bombs were defused near Dashaswhamedh Ghat,two kilometres away from the Kashi Vishwanath Temple.
Shivaganga train was thoroughly checked before it left for Delhi.
President A P J Abdul Kalam and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh condemned the blast and asked the people to maintain calm.
UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil are rushing for an on-the-spot assessment of the situation.
Varanasi is known as the cultural capital of India. It has been a seat of knowledge from about 700 BC onwards. Its universities attracted students from all over the then-known world