UPSC Exam Preparation: This Day in History – Jul 13

13 July 2011

Mumbai bombings


What happened?

Mumbai was struck by a series of bomb explosions in different locations leading to the death of 26 people and injuring another 130.

Background

  • Mumbai, the maximum city, once again became the target of terror activities on 13th July 2011 when a series of three bomb blasts occurred.
  • The first blast occurred at 6:54 PM at Zaveri Bazaar. The device was planted on a motorcycle. The second blast erupted in the Opera House on Charni Road at 6:55 PM; this time the device was placed in a tiffin box. The last explosion occurred at Dadar at 7:06 PM.
  • All the areas were crowded and the rush-hour timing was obviously intended to cause maximum damage.
  • A total of 26 people were killed in the brutal attacks and 130 people were injured.
  • Investigations revealed that the devices used were IEDs or Improvised Explosive Devices. The terrorists had used ammonium nitrate-based explosives combined with fuel oil.
  • Two of the three blasts were high-intensity ones. The police ruled out suicide bombers and said that remote detonators would have been used to set off the explosives.
  • On 9th August, one man was arrested by the Maharashtra ATS (Anti-Terrorism Squad) in connection with the blasts.
  • In May 2012, the ATS filed a chargesheet naming 10 people responsible for the blasts. Four of them were already under arrest. 6 others were on the run and this included the mastermind of the terrorist organisation Indian Mujahideen, Yasin Bhatkal.
  • Bhatkal was arrested in 2013 and is the accused in several blast cases in the country. He was sentenced to death in 2016 in connection with the 2013 Hyderabad blasts.
  • In the immediate aftermath of the attacks, the government appealed to the people to remain calm. The central government announced a compensation of Rs.1 lakh to the injured and Rs.2 lakh to the families of the dead. The Maharashtra state government announced a compensation of Rs.5 lakh to the bereaved families and some amount to the injured as well.
  • The then Chief Minister of Maharashtra Prithviraj Chavan remarked that the “attacks were an attack on the heart of India.”
  • The United Nations, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO), the European Union (EU) and others condemned the attacks.

 

See previous ‘This Day in History’ here.

 

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