Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was all praise for the people of Hyderabad for refusing to be provoked by the terror attacks in the city that killed 16 and injured 117.

He arrived here by a special aircraft to visit the twin blast sites and meet some of the injured being treated in different hospitals in the city.

He landed at the old Begumpet airport, which is currently being used only for VIP visits, at 11.05 a.m. He was received by the Andhra Pradesh Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan and the Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy.

“I have come to share the grief of the people of Hyderabad. I call upon the people to maintain calm in this hour of grief,” he said, while assuring that the best of medical treatment would be provided to the injured. The Prime Minister strongly condemned the bomb blasts and directed the Central agencies to extend all possible help to the Andhra Pradesh state authorities in relief operations.

“This is a dastardly attack, the guilty will not go unpunished,” he added.

After landing at Begumpet airport, he switched over to a helicopter which took him to Saroornagar, from where he drove to the blast site. He spent about ten minutes at the spot, as the Chief Minister explained to him how the blast had occurred.

He later visited two hospitals where the injured were being treated.

Singh held a meeting with the Governor, Chief Minister and other officials at the Begumpet airport, before taking off for Delhi at 1.45 p.m.

Meanwhile authorities probing the blasts have confirmed the use of improvised explosive devices, which were bought to the sites hung on the side of a bicycle.

Reports indicate that a surveillance camera in that area had caught a cyclist clothed in green T shirt and a second person walking towards the blast site, who could provide a breakthrough in the investigations. No arrests have, however, been made yet.

(This article was published on February 24, 2013)
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