Jama Masjid targeted second time since 2006

Last Updated: Sunday, September 19, 2010 - 21:12

New Delhi: This is the second time that the
historic Jama Masjid in the walled city has become the target
of `mysterious` attacks since 2006, when two explosions took
place inside the shrine leaving 14 injured.

On April 14, 2006, two explosions inside the 17th century
mosque soon after the evening Friday prayers had left 14
people injured. But, no outfit had claimed responsibility for
the incident and no arrests have been made so far.

Two Taiwanese nationals were injured when unidentified
men fired several rounds on a tourist bus outside the Jama
Masjid, a major tourist attraction in the heritage-rich old
city of the national capital. The attackers fled from the spot
on a motorcycle.

Both today`s and the 2006 attack have taken place on a
public holiday when more people throng the mosque for prayers
as well as to visit the shrine.

While today was Sunday, April 14, 2006 was a public
holiday on account of B R Ambedkar Jayanti.

Though it is not yet clear whether it is a terrorist
attack, the Indian Mujahideen terrorist group has claimed
responsibility for the incident.

Even in the 2006 attack, police had suspected the role
of local groups, but have not made arrests in this connection
till date.

After the 2006 attacks, the Delhi Police had put the
entire Walled City under a hi-tech CCTV surveillance system
and installed CCTVs inside and outside the mosque.

But, none of the 20 CCTVs at the Masjid here were
working and officials had recently returned them to the Wakf
Board which had installed them.

The mosque authorities claim they have been telling the
Union Home Ministry, verbally and in writing, to increase the
security at the mosque, which witnessed two bomb blasts in
quick succession on April 14, 2006.

Shahi Imam Ahmed Bukhari had in May this year written to
Home Minister P Chidambaram seeking to upgrade security at the
mosque and suggested measures like installing CCTVs and
deployment of CRPF personnel.


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First Published: Sunday, September 19, 2010 - 21:12

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