Ahmedabad, July 27 : The death toll in the Gujarat serial blasts, which occurred a day after multiple explosions in Bangalore, has reached to 38 this morning and is expected to rise further.
Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil has convened a high level meeting on Sunday morning to review the security situation throughout the country. Saturday's blasts injured at least 90 people who were admitted in several hospitals including Vadilal Sarabhai Hospital, Civil Hospital and LG Hospital.
Terrorists triggered 16 serial blasts in a space of 60 to 70 minutes on Saturday night in crowded market areas of Ahmedabad.
Maninagar, Isanpur, Narol circle, Bapunagar, Hatkeshwar, Sarangpur bridge, Sarkhej, Odhav, Sardar Patel market, Civil hospital, Juhapura, Ambur tower building, Raipur and Gowribhadi were the areas where blasts took place.
Fourteen crowded areas including market places were hit by the synchronised "low-intensity" explosions in a space of 60 to 70 minutes after the first blast hit Maninagar at 6.45 pm.
The bombs installed in tiffin boxes were strapped on to bicycles. Some of the blast sites were in sensitive areas in the old city but the situation was peaceful.
There were three blasts in Maninagar--the constituency of Chief Minister Narendra Modi--and two in Sarkhej targetting a State transport CNG bus and near the old Sangam theatre.
Significantly, two blasts occured in the premises of Civil and LG hospitals where several victims of the explosions in other areas were being rushed exacerbating the already tense situation.
A nationwide alert has been sounded.
Modi said, "The Ahmedabad blasts was a "war against India" and a handiwork of terror groups. There should be one voice against terrorism. The people behind the attack will be "hounded out."
Declaring there should be one voice against terrorism, Modi also said there is a "mastermind group and a mastermind country" behind the blasts.
Union Minister of State for Home Sriprakash Jaiswal told reporters in Kanpur, "The blasts were of low intensity and similar to those which hit Bangalore."
Modi condemned the blasts and appealed for calm. His party leader and MP from Gandhinagar L K Advani blamed the Centre and the lack of tough anti-terror laws for the rise in terror activities.
Home Secretary Madhukar Gupta said in New Delhi that National Security Guards personnel were being rushed to Ahmedabad where Rapid Action Force(RAF) personnel were already deployed to restore calm in the blast-hit areas some of which are highly sensitive.
Police said 35 injured persons were rushed to Vadilal Sarabhai hospital while 25 injured were receiving treatment in LG hospital. Some injured were also in the Civil hospital.
Television channels claimed they got an e-mail from little known outfit called 'Indian Mujahideen' to say they were responsible for Saturday's blasts.