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Terrorists struck for the first time in Jaipur triggering eight serial blasts in a span of 12 minutes on Tuesday night in crowded market areas and near a Hanuman [Images] temple in the walled city leaving at least 60 killed and 200 injured.
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"According to the information I have received 60 people have died and 150 have been injured," said Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, who rushed back to the state capital from Jodhpur.
Bangladesh-based Harkut-ul-Jehadi Islami is suspected to be behind the blasts that has taken the state authorities by surprise, home ministry sources said.
The sources ruled out the use of RDX in the carefully orchestrated low-intensity explosions which were suspected to have been set off from cycles in areas including near Hawa Mahal which are frequented by domestic and foreign tourists.
The blasts rocked Tripolia Bazar, where large number of devotees turned up at a Hanuman temple, Johari Bazar, Manas Chowk, Badi Choupal and Choti Choupal-- all located within a two-km radius in the old city. Inspector General(Jaipur) Pankaj Singh said in all there were eight blasts, a couple of them in the same area.
Police said one explosive was defused by bomb disposal squad near the Hanuman temple.
Blood was splattered at the scene of the blasts which tossed some of the victims several feet up in the sky.
The Centre rushed bomb data squad of the National Security Guards to Jaipur.
Rajasthan Director General of Police A S Gill said the blasts were "obviously a terror attack."
The Union Home Ministry reviewed the situation. The bomb blasts came eight months after terrorists struck at Ajmer which two persons were killed.
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Doctors said many of the victims had shrapnel injuries.
They feared that the toll may go up further.
The blasts triggered panic and a stampede-like situation amid allegations by opposition parties that there was a total intelligence failure.
Indian Premiere League Commisioner Lalit Modi said said the league match scheduled to be played in Jaipur on Saturday will go on as planned.
Rapid Action Force personnel were deployed in Jaipur to help deal with the situation as security was beefed up.
One of the blasts took place in a car and another near a handloom shop in Kotwali area of the city, home department sources said.
Most of the injured were rushed to Sawai Man Singh hospital. Bodies of several victims lay strewn in the corridors of hospitals.
The blasts triggered a near-stampede situation at the blast sites were crammed with peak-hour shoppers and panic-stricken people ran helter skelter in search of safety.
The Hanuman temple at Tripolia bazar was crowded with worshippers being a Tuesday.
Image: The scene near the blast site at the Hanuman Mandir in Chandpole
Reportage: PTI | Photograph: Rajesh Kumawat
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