Serial blasts rock Mahabodhi temple complex in Bihar

Multiple blasts on Sunday rocked the temple town of Bodhgaya, leaving two monks and three others injured. While four serial blasts took place inside the Mahabodhi Temple complex at about 5:40 am, three blasts took place at the Terega Monastery.

According to the Gaya SP Chandan Kushwaha, two live bombs have been recovered from the area of the blasts.

A blast took place near the famous 80-foot statue of Lord Buddha.

Local authorities said crude bombs had been used for the low-intensity explosions. No structural damage has been reported to the temple.

DIG Nayyar Husnain Khan said, "The sanctum sanctorum of the Mahabodhi Temple is intact. The identity of the injured monks is yet to be ascertained."

"They have been rushed to the Magadh hospital for treatment," he added.

“We were engaged in our morning prayers when we heard the blasts. The sounds were very loud. We could hear four explosions,” a monk told a news channels.

Mahabodhi is one of the most important Buddhist pilgrimage centres in the world and is also the state's most important tourist spot.

The complex consists of the Mahabodhi temple with the diamond throne and the holy Bodhi tree. This tree was originally a sapling of the Maha Bodhi tree in Sri Lanka, itself grown from a sapling of the original Bodhi tree.

Sources said the NIA will be sending a team to Bodhgaya.

According to reports, Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar has also set off for the spot.

Entry to the temple was closed soon after the blast.

Bodhgaya is a high priority area throughout the year and always an adequate amount of security cover.

Pilgrims are thoroughly checked before they enter the temple's premises.

According to the police, it is too early to say if the blasts are the handiwork of terrorists or even Maoists.

The police are investigating the cause of the blasts and trying to ascertain the point of security breach.
Source - hindustan times

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