Three killed in grenade attack in Amritsar

At least 3 persons were killed and nearly 10 injured in a grenade blast that took place today at the sect Nirankari congregation in Rajasansi, some 12-km from holy town in Amritsar.  ANI photo

Three persons were killed and nearly 20 others injured in a grenade attack on Sunday at the Nirankari sect congregation in Rajasansi, 12 km from Amritsar. A terror strike is not being ruled out.

Two motorcycle-borne men with covered faces, one of them with a flowing beard, forced their way into the hall of the sect building by brandishing a pistol. The suspects then detained a sect worker and lobbed a grenade inside the prayer room before fleeing on the bike. Over 100 people, including women and children, were listening to the sermon when a loud thunder interrupted the prayers. The explosion left three dead on the spot.

The Narankari sect has huge followers in several states and abroad.

The grenade attack comes days after the Punjab counter-intelligence wing issued a high alert stating that about six-seven militants of the Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) terror outfit had infiltrated into Punjab from Pakistan. The communique by the intelligence was reported last week in these columns.

Security has been beefed up in Punjab and neighbouring states.

An eyewitness said volunteers tried to chase the suspects, but failed. “We were listening to the discourse with folded hands. Suddenly, there was a big thunder. A crater with a 3-inch diameter was formed by the impact of the explosion,” a worker of the sect said.

The safety valve of the grenade has been found and is being examined.

 

A couple of days ago, in the wake of the threat, the Punjab Police had released posters of Zakir Moosa, the chief of Jammu and Kashmir-based Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind terror outfit with reported links to JeM. The posters were also pasted in various parts of the state. There were also reports that Moosa was spotted in Punjab border belt with his movement near Amritsar.

Over the last two months, as many as five Kashmiri students studying in Punjab’s Jalandhar and having alleged links with terror outfits were nabbed by the police. On January 2, 2016, militants from Pakistan had stormed the Pathankot airbase of the Indian Air Force (IAF). Several people were killed in the attack.

Pakistani militants also carried out an attack on Dinanagar police station in Gurdaspur district.

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Three killed in grenade attack in Amritsar

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