Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

THE INTERVIEW

Abbas Araghchi, Iranian deputy foreign minister

Read more

THE OBSERVERS

More of this year's best Observers stories

Read more

FOCUS

When water becomes a weapon of war

Read more

ENCORE!

Eve Ensler: 'In The Body Of The World'

Read more

THE INTERVIEW

Ed Husain, Author of 'The Islamist'

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan Protests: Democracy put to the test

Read more

DEBATE

Pakistan Protests: Democracy put to the test (part 2)

Read more

REPORTERS

Pakistan: Imran Khan, from the cricket field to politics

Read more

MEDIAWATCH

Is Carla Bruni against a political comeback for Sarkozy?

Read more

  • Trust and 'bio-disaster units' needed to fight Ebola

    Read more

  • France vows crackdown on unemployment benefit ‘abusers’

    Read more

  • Video: Bodies ‘left behind’ as Ukraine forces flee rebel assault

    Read more

  • Julie Gayet wins privacy case against French glossy Closer

    Read more

  • Several UN peacekeepers killed in Mali explosion

    Read more

  • NATO plans new 'spearhead' force to counter Russia

    Read more

  • French clubs left behind as others spend big

    Read more

  • Britain drops arrest warrant for ill boy’s parents

    Read more

  • When water becomes a weapon of war

    Read more

  • Arab media strike back at IS Islamists – with cartoons

    Read more

  • US military targets Somalia's al Shabaab Islamist group

    Read more

  • Eve Ensler: 'In The Body Of The World'

    Read more

  • Boko Haram Islamists seize northeast Nigerian town

    Read more

  • Is Carla Bruni against a political comeback for Sarkozy?

    Read more

  • Monaco’s Falcao leaves Ligue 1 for Man Utd

    Read more

  • UN backs Iraqi request for inquiry into IS militant crimes

    Read more

  • French education ministry picture sparks racist abuse

    Read more

  • Obama calls for higher wages amid 'revving' US economy

    Read more

Asia-pacific

Terrorists suspected in Indian temple town blast

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-12-07

A bomb exploded during a Hindu ceremony in the Indian temple town of Varanasi on Tuesday, killing a toddler and leaving many wounded. Officials said the attack appears to be linked to terrorists and issued a nationwide alert.

AP - A bomb hidden in a metal canister exploded Tuesday evening as thousands gathered for a Hindu ceremony, killing a toddler and triggering a stampede that left many others wounded in a holy Indian city.

Police said the blast in Varanasi appeared to be a terrorist attack but would not say who they suspected.
 
The bomb was stashed in a milk container on the Sheetla Ghat, one of many stone staircases leading to the Ganges river, the site of daily spiritual rituals, according to police official Brij Lal.
 
The explosion set off a stampede, and 19 people, including four foreigners, were wounded, Lal said. It was not immediately clear how many were hurt in the blast and how many in the subsequent chaos.
 
A 2-year-old who had been sitting on her mother's lap when the bomb went off died in a hospital, Lal said. Her mother and two others, including one of the foreigners, were in serious condition.
 
The force of the explosion ripped away a metal railing and damaged stones up to 200 feet (60 meters) away, said a witness, Ramatama Srivastava.
 
Srivastava - who spoke by telephone from Varanasi, which is about 180 miles (300 kilometers) southeast of the Uttar Pradesh state capital of Lucknow - said he noticed the foreigners were watching the Hindu prayer ceremony and taking photographs.
 
The ceremony is a daily ritual in Varanasi, the holiest city in the Hindu religion, during which priests and others light oil lamps, ring bells and chant prayers to worship the Ganges.
 
The Press Trust of India reported a Muslim terror group allegedly claimed responsibility for the blast in an e-mail to several media outlets. Authorities were working to verify the validity of the letter, allegedly sent by the terror group Indian Mujahedeen. PTI reported the e-mail was sent from a computer in a Mumbai suburb, and police were rushed to the area after the blast.
 
The Indian government issued a nationwide alert.
 
In March 2006, twin bombings blamed on a Pakistan-based Islamic militant group tore through a train station and a temple in Varanasi, killing 20 people.

Date created : 2010-12-07

  • FRANCE

    Nuclear power and fighter planes on Sarkozy’s India wish list

    Read more

  • NUCLEAR POWER

    India signs multi-billion euro nuclear deal with France

    Read more

  • FRANCE

    Sarkozy visits India, Carla grabs headlines

    Read more

COMMENT(S)