Patil, Advani visit Assam; RDX-TNT used in blasts

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Guwahati, Oct 31 (UNI) Investigative officials suspected that a deadly cocktail of RDX and TNT was used in yesterday's serial blasts in Assam even as Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil and BJP leader L K Advani today rushed to the state, which is yet to come to terms with the deadliest ever terrorist attack, leaving 77 dead and over 450 injured.

NSG sleuths have begun investigations to close in on the culprits with the needle of suspicion pointing towards 'Jehadi' elements and cross-border terrorism. However, the National Security Guards refused to divulge to the media on the leads.

Assam police confirmed that car bombs were used in the blasts.

One of the bombs was planted in an Indica car, another in a Maruti van, while the third one was in a two-wheeler.

Mr Advani was the first to reach Guwahati this morning and shortly afterwards Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil arrived. Mr Advani went around Guwahati and Mr Patil began his round of visits from Kokrajhar and Barpeta before reaching Guwahati to hold a review meeting with the authorities.

Meanwhile, angry mobs once again ruled the streets of Guwahati, blaming the authorities of complete failure, forcing the district administration to reimpose curfew this afternoon in some parts of the state capital.

Mr Advani, who made a hurricane visit to the blast-affected areas in Guwahati, alleged that terrorism, sponsored and supported from across Bangladesh, had led to the Assam carnage.

''I would like to see how the Prime Minister, who is the elected representative of this region, takes on this challenge,'' he said.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is scheduled to arrive here tomorrow.

Meanwhile, Mr Patil was holding a meeting at the Raj Bhawan where all the top brass of the Assam Police and other security forces were present.

A barrage of bandh calls is all set to paralyse life throughout the state. The VHP has called for a statewide bandh tomorrow while the AASU has given a 24-hour bandh call on Monday.

The AASU, AGP and AJYCP held seperate press conferences and pointed fingers at 'Jedadi' elements for the attacks.

The Assam government, which had initially blamed the ULFA, was now on the defensive.

''For me, all are terrorists and I do not want to name anyone. Let the investigators find out the truth,'' Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said.

However, the ULFA, initially suspected to be the perpetrators, denied any involvement.

Special Branch IGP Khagen Sharma also suspected 'Jehadi' elements to be responsible for the blasts.

The government has set in motion the vital task of gathering clues with NSG sleuths, who had arrived here last evening, concluding their visit to all the three blast spots in the city.

The spots remained sealed since yesterday and the NSG team was reported to have collected some very vital clues. The experts teams also visited the blast spots at Kokrajhar, Barpeta Road and Bongaigaon in lower Assam. Special NSG-ATS teams had arrived in two batches immediately after the blasts yesterday.

Meanwhile, the blast-ravaged towns observed spontaneous bandhs today with people in a visible state of utter shock and dismay. Tension brewed in Guwahati with people shouting anti-government slogans at the spots in Pan Bazaar and Fancy Bazaar during the visit of Mr Advani.

Mr Advani had to intervene and appealed for calm as the people showed signs of going on a rampage. EDS: Here pick up suitably from earlier series.


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