No decision on CISF cover for temple, says home minister

Two days after Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar demanded that the security of the world heritage site Mahabodhi Temple in Bodh Gaya be handed over to the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), Union Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde on Wednesday remained non-committal on it.

Request from other states

He, however, hastened to add that the proposal for CISF cover was under consideration. “But no decision has been taken in this regard so far as there have been similar requests from other States too for much-revered temples and mosques,” said Shinde, who was in Bodh Gaya to take stock of the serial blasts which rocked the temple town on Sunday.

Flanked by UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and AICC general secretary Ambika Soni, Shinde visited the blast sites, apart from the sacred Bodhi Tree.

This tree has enormous significance for Buddhists as it was here where Lord Buddha spent the first week in meditation after attaining enlightenment.

“The NIA and NSG team is investigating the blast case meticulously. However, we do not want any arrests should be made in a hurry,” said the home minister and added that “three or four people are reported to have planted the bombs in and around the temple complex the previous night of Sunday.”

Though Nitish could not personally meet Shinde at Bodh Gaya, the chief minister deputed his cabinet colleagues Bijendra Yadav and Shahid Ali Khan to brief him about the incident.

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