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Wednesday, 29 May, 2002, 07:14 GMT 08:14 UK
Bomb blasts rock Indian state
Riot in Ahmedabad
Gujarat has been shaken by months of violence
A series of bomb blasts have rocked the commercial capital of the Indian state of Gujarat.

About a dozen people were injured in three explosions in the city of Ahmedabad, police and hospital sources said.


It appears that the bombs are crudely made bombs and intended to create a panic

Police spokesman
Police said bombs went off in a market area and on buses during morning rush hour.

No-one has admitted planting the devices.

Gujarat, in western India, has been hit by Hindu-Muslim violence since February this year, when a train carrying Hindu activists from the disputed holy site at Ayodhya was attacked by a Muslim mob.

Consecutive blasts

Police said the first of Wednesday's bombs exploded in the market area of Gurukul, a mainly Hindu neighbourhood, followed by a second blast five minutes later at a bus terminal in the mixed Hindu-Muslim district of Geetamandir.

Riot in Gujarat
More than 1,000 people have died in Hindu-Muslim fighting

Shortly afterwards a third device went off on a bus in the Hindu-Muslim neighbourhood of Vasana.

Police said Wednesday's bombs were not of a sophisticated type.

"It appears that the bombs... are crudely made bombs and intended to create a panic," a police spokesman told Reuters news agency.

Sectarian violence

Nearly 1,000 people, mainly Muslims, have died in riots, which have destroyed large parts of Ahmedabad.

Indian police in Gujarat

Human rights groups say at least 2,500 people have been killed, including women and children targeted in revenge attacks.

The violence has also led many people to flee their homes.

Security forces in the state are on high alert following the recent fighting.

Earlier this month, the Indian Government deployed an extra 1,000 specially-trained riot police to Gujarat to help the local police force contend with the trouble.

Last week, soldiers who had been sent to Gujarat were redeployed to the Indian-Pakistan border amid rising tension between the two countries.

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 ON THIS STORY
The Times of India resident editor Kingshuk Nag
"We haven't been able to pinpoint who is responsible"
Gujarat conflict in-depth

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Tense state

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09 May 02 | South Asia
09 May 02 | South Asia
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08 May 02 | South Asia
07 May 02 | South Asia
15 Mar 02 | South Asia
28 Feb 02 | South Asia
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