Alert in Uttar Pradesh, Mayawati sees ‘plot’


Lucknow : A red alert was sounded in several parts of Uttar Pradesh after explosives were recovered from the Faizabad railway station in the wee hours of Wednesday, a day after three low intensity blasts ripped through Gorakhpur town.

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As security was beefed up in all vulnerable cities and towns including Ayodhya, Varanasi and Mathura, Chief Minister Mayawati termed the Gorakhpur blasts as a "plot" by her political adversaries Samajwadi Party and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

"Both the Samajwadi Party and BJP were out to incite communal trouble in the state and I have reason to believe that the Gorakhpur incident was a result of such a conspiracy hatched with the sole intention to vitiate the atmosphere," she told reporters here.

While state police chief G.L. Sharma air -dashed to Gorakhpur Wednesday morning along with the new Special Task Force (STF) chief Shailja Kant Misra to take stock of the situation, a team of explosives experts was rushed to Faizabad to assess the lethal potential of the explosives recovered.

Faizabad Superintendent of Police B.P. Tripathi said: "Just as our men spread out to keep a vigil on all public places in the wake of the Gorakhpur blasts, an airbag containing about 10 kg of some powder and nearly 10 litres of a liquid -suspected to be the deadly ammonium nitrate – was found abandoned under a bench outside the reservation counters at the railway station.

"We do not rule out the possibility of some connection between the recovery of these explosives and the blasts in Gorakhpur," Rai told IANS over telephone from Faizabad, about 120 km from here.

The high-level team led by the state police chief said it had found some clues to the serial blasts in Gorakhpur. "We are confident of getting on to the right trail, but we would not like to disclose the details at this juncture," Sharma told mediapersons.

Heavy police deployment was made in different parts of the eastern Uttar Pradesh town that is 90 km from the India-Nepal border. Special care was being taken to ensure security of the Gorakhdham temple, a popular Hindu shrine headed by BJP MP Yogi Adityanath.

Three timer-device bombs that went off at intervals of five minutes from 7 p.m. Tuesday in Golghar area in the heart of Gorakhpur were kept inside tiffin boxes on bicycles abandoned at three places – near a petrol pump, a restaurant and outside some shops.

The state's Principal Home Secretary K. Chandramauli said the incident was "a possible handiwork of mischief-mongers intending to incite religious violence in the communally sensitive town".