Indian police kill Varanasi bomb suspect
LUCKNOW: Indian police on Wednesday shot dead an Islamic militant suspected of links to a triple bombing that killed 23 people in Hinduism's holy city of Varanasi and sparked a nationwide alert. Counter-terrorism forces gunned down the wanted man just hours after the blasts, which also wounded 68 people, rocked the ancient city and raised fears of a Hindu backlash. "Probably he was involved in the Varanasi blasts," police superintendent Rajesh Pandey said.
The authorities said they suspected "terrorists", a euphemism for Islamic extremists, were behind the carnage late Tuesday. The suspect was found with a pistol and 2.5 kilogrammes of explosives after he was shot on the outskirts of the Uttar Pradesh state capital Lucknow, 300 kilometres (190 miles) north of Varanasi. Named as Salar, the man was believed to be a member of the Islamic militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba, which is fighting Indian rule in Kashmir, and had been wanted for several years. "Police had tracked Salar from Kashmir where he also operated, Tiku added.
Posted by: Fred 2006-03-09