Nepal beefs up security at all Buddhist shrines

Kathmandu, July 8: Authorities in Nepal said today that security would be beefed up at all major Buddhist shrines, in the wake of the bomb blasts on Sunday at the Mahabodhi temple complex in Bihar's Bodh Gaya town.

Although Nepal Police has not received any concrete intelligence inputs that Buddhist pilgrimage centres may be targeted, a security alert has been put on all shrines, including at Lumbini, the birthplace of the Buddha, close to the border with India.

Kapilvastu, where the Buddha spent his early life, is also under the security alert.

Immediately after nine blasts went off in quick succession between 5.30 a.m. and 6 a.m. On Sunday, in the Mahabodhi temple complex in Bodh Gaya, an additional platoon of security personnel was deployed in Lumbini, a Unesco-conserved heritage site.

"After the serial bomb blasts in Bodh Gaya, we decided to beef up security in major Buddhist pilgrimage spots like Lumbini, Bouddha and Syombhu in Kathmandu. These are preventive measures," Nepal Police spokesperson Nawraj Silwal said.

Bouddha (or Bodhnath) and Syombhu (or Swayambhunath), are stupas venerated by the Buddhists.

Nepal Police headquarters on Sunday circulated a memo to district police and administrative offices in areas where major Buddhist pilgrimage spots are located, asking them to be alert and vigilant in the light of the blasts in India.

After the blasts, the Uttar Pradesh government also sounded an alert on the Nepal-India border.


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