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Show goes on in Bangalore despite blasts

Sunday, 18 April 2010 - 12:50am IST | Place: Bangalore | Agency: dna
Two blasts hit Chinnaswamy stadium in Bangalore, injuring 15; another bomb defused during match.

Even as T20 czar Lalit Modi and Union minister of state for external affairs expert Shashi Tharoor engaged in a battle of egos, explosions rocked M Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore and almost threatened to rip apart IPL-3 of its veneer of glitz and glamour on Saturday.

As almost 45,000 cricket fans began to fill the stadium to watch the crucial clash between the two top-ranking teams of IPL, Mumbai Indians and hosts Royal Challengers, two low-intensity explosions stunned them into silence at 3.15pm.

The first explosion was near the outer wall of the stadium at Gate number 12. Fifteen people, including four city policemen and a private security staff, sustained injuries. Four of the injured are reported to be in critical condition in a city hospital.

The city police said no one has claimed responsibility for the blasts.

The second bomb went off a few minutes later at half a kilomtere away at Anil Kumble Circle, without causing any injuries.

A third bomb was found near Gate 8, when the match was in progress, but defused by the security team.

Minutes after the blasts, police cordoned off the entire area and closed down the gates to prevent movement of people as spectators waited to move into the stadium.

Players of both the teams were asked to return to their dressing rooms till the police gave the go ahead for the match. The match, which was scheduled to take place at 4pm, eventually started at 5pm.

“It appears an explosive was planted near Gate No. 12 behind a plastic billboard. Four policemen suffered minor injuries while a security guard was seriously hurt,” said city police commissioner Shankar Bidari. “It was not a powerful explosive. Forensic experts will examine the site and determine the nature of the explosive,” he said.

Akram Rehman, a private security guard, manning Gate 12 said he heard an explosion from the top of the boundary wall.

“I fell to the ground as the blast happened. Within seconds, I gathered my senses and found a colleague was sprawled on the ground, bleeding from both his ears. He was immediately rushed to Mallya hospital,” he said. Initially it was thought that an overheated generator had exploded within the stadium.

Forensic experts visited the blast spots to examine the nature of explosives. They said the explosive device, wrapped in a newspaper, was kept in a plastic cover. “It could have been made of gelatin and nitrogen but one has to wait for the result of laboratory tests to confirm the composition,” said one of the experts.

The IT hub, which has been on the terror radar, has witnessed low intensity bomb explosions for the second time since July 2008. On July 25, 2008, the city was rocked by eight serial blasts, claiming the life of a woman. The Royal Challengers were initially apprehensive of taking to the field after the blast, sources said.

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From p1
“It appears an explosive was planted near gate no 12 behind a plastic billboard. Four policemen suffered minor injuries while a security guard was seriously hurt,” said city police commissioner Shankar Bidari. “It was not a powerful explosive. Forensic experts will examine the site and determined the nature of the explosive,” he said.
Akram Rehman, a private security guard, manning Gate 12 said he heard an explosion from the top of the boundary wall. “I fell to the ground as the blast happened. Within seconds, I gathered my senses and found a colleague was sprawled on the ground, bleeding from both his ears. He was immediately rushed to Mallya hospital,” he said. Initially it was thought that an overheated generator had exploded within the stadium.
Forensic experts visited the blast spots to examine the nature of explosives. They said the explosive device, wrapped in a newspaper, was kept in a plastic cover. “It could have been made of gelatin and nitrogen but one has to wait for the result of laboratory tests to confirm the composition,” said one of the experts.
The IT hub, which has been on the terror radar, has witnessed low intensity bomb explosions for the second time since July 2008. On July 25, 2008, the city was rocked by eight serial blasts, claiming the life of a woman. The Royal Challengers were initially apprehensive of taking to the field after the blast, sources said.




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