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Be careful in India due to Ayodhya, terror attacks: Australia


Sydney/New Delhi: Australia Wednesday advised its citizens to exercise a high degree of caution while travelling in India due to likely terror attacks and possible communal tension over a judgment on the Ayodhya land dispute.

The Australian High Commission in New Delhi has reissued its travel advice and cautioned against possible terror attacks, civil unrest or political tension “surrounding the verdict in the contentious Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid court case Sep 30”.

“We advise you to exercise a high degree of caution in India at this time because of the high risk of terrorist activity by militant groups. Pay close attention to your personal security at all times… Terrorist attacks could occur at any time anywhere in India with little or no warning,” it said.

The advisory comes ahead of Thursday’s judgment on the Ayodhya land dispute – an issue that sparked widespread communal violence in 1992 when some Hindu fanatics demolished the 16th century mosque constructed near the site.

About the Oct 3-14 Commonwealth Games, the Australian advisory said there was “a high risk of terrorist attack in New Delhi”.

“We continue to receive reporting that terrorists plan to attack public places, including hotels and tourist locations, in New Delhi, Mumbai and other major cities. In planning your activities, consider the kind of places known to be terrorist targets and the level of security provided….

“Australians in New Delhi should be aware that the Commonwealth Games will be held in a security environment where there is a high risk of terrorism.”

Australia’s fresh terror alert advises its nationals to avoid some parts of the country and leading tourist spots including the Red Fort and Baha’i temple in New Delhi.

In its updated advisory, while Jammu and Kashmir has a “do not travel” warning, the northeastern states of Assam, Nagaland, Tripura and Manipur have been clubbed under the “reconsider your need to travel” category.

The Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade website said: “Terrorists may also be planning attacks against Indian political and security interests. We also continue to receive reports about possible terrorist attacks against markets frequented by foreigners in New Delhi.”

India’s Supreme Court as well as the famed Lotus temple are all subject to possible terror attacks.

The Indian parliament and Red Fort are also on the list of places that could be terror targets along with hotels in New Delhi and Mumbai.