Crude device goes off in ‘basti' inhabited by rag-pickers

Two children were killed and half a dozen persons injured in a bomb blast which rocked the Kareli area of Allahabad on Wednesday afternoon.

It occurred in a garbage dump near a nullah and the victims were rag-pickers.

Unofficial reports said the blast, in a ‘basti' inhabited by rag-pickers, claimed five lives — four children and a woman.

It is suspected that a crude bomb was placed in the dump and the device went off around 3.30 p.m. when the children playing in the area handled it.

A team of the Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) and forensic experts have rushed to Allahabad.

Uttar Pradesh Inspector-General (Law and Order) B. P. Singh told journalists that it appeared to be a powerful blast considering the damage caused.

One of the deceased was identified. The injured include two girls and two women in the age group 11- 40.

Mr. Singh denied that crude bombs hurled by some anti-social elements caused the explosion.

He, however, admitted that Allahabad, particularly the old city area, was notorious for manufacture of crude bombs.

When it was pointed out that a similar blast occurred in Allahabad last year and the victims were three children, Mr. Singh said crude bomb blasts were common there.