Tuesday, July 11, 2006

India : 140 dead in rush hour terrorist attack on surburban trains

At least 140 people were killed and 257 injured in a string of seven terror blasts that tore through first class compartments of suburban trains around 6 p.m during the evening peak hour traffic here today.

As the blasts ripped apart train compartments, mangled bodies of passengers fell on the tracks and survivors, many of them bleeding profusely, jostled to come out leading to chaotic scenes.

The blasts occured between 6 p.m and 6.30 p.m at Mahim, Bandra, Matunga, Borivili, Mira Road, Jogeshwari and Khar when people from offices were returning home. Maharashtra Chief Secretary, D K Shankaran, put the number of death at 138 and the injured 257.

Hospital authorities in the city have confirmed arrival of over 100 bodies by 8:30 pm. A large number of injured, including commuters of the blasts-hit trains, were admitted to various government and private hospitals in various parts of the city.

Mumbai Police Chief, A N Roy, said "we are busy with rescue operations. Our first priority is to rescue the injured,'' he said. However, heavy monsoon downpours were hampering the effort.

AP Reports: Police were also reportedly carrying out raids across the country following the explosions, presumably in search of suspects. A television report said a suspect was in custody.

A senior Mumbai police official, P S Pasricha, said the explosions were part of a well-coordinated attack. The country's Home Minister said over television that authorities had information that an attack was coming, but did not know the time or place.

Witnesses reported seeing body parts strewn about stations, and television news channels broadcast footage of bystanders carrying victims to ambulances and searching through the wreckage for survivors and bodies. Some of the injured were seen frantically dialing their cell phones.

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