बुधवार, 23 फ़रवरी 2011

Godhra : 27-2-2002 Hindu pilgrims have died in a fire on a train in India

- अरविन्द सिसोदिया 
 गोधरा में जब जिन्दा कार सेवक जलाये गए थे तब यह समाचार बी बी सी ने दिया था जो यथावत यहाँ है .....
2002: Hindus die in train fire
Fifty-seven Hindu pilgrims have died in a fire on a train in India.
The fire happened as the Sabarmati Express, bound for Ahmedabad, was pulling out of Godhra station in the western state of Gujarat at approximately 0630 today.
The train was returning hundreds of Hindu activists from a pilgrimage to the disputed holy site of Ayodhya in the northern Indian state of Uttar P, which is claimed by both Muslims and Hindus.
A gang of Muslims are suspected of causing the fire and India's prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee has appealed for calm amid fears of renewed religious tension in the country.
'Sad and unfortunate'
The dispute over Ayodhya has been ongoing for several years.
In 1992 the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), or World Hindu Council, organised a demonstration which resulted in the destruction of a 500-year-old Moghul mosque at Ayodhya.
The Hindus believe the mosque occupied the same spot where their god Ram was born.
The destruction of the mosque sparked the most widespread rioting India has seen since partition, and resulted in the deaths of more than 3,000 people.
More than 14,000 Hindus have gathered at Ayodhya in recent weeks to plan the construction of a temple. They have set a deadline of 15 March for work to begin.
According to the head of police in Godhra, Raju Bhargava, it appears this morning's train fire was started by a gang of Muslims who were angered by pro-Hindu chanting on the train.
Initial evidence suggests kerosene was poured into four of the carriages before they were set alight.
Local resident Rakesh Kimani, 18, witnessed the event: "I heard screams for help as I came out of my house.
"I saw a huge ball of fire... people putting out their hands and heads through the windows, trying to escape.
"It was a horrible sight."
Schools and shops have been shut in Godhra and a curfew has been imposed. Police in the town have been ordered to shoot troublemakers on sight.
Prime Minister Vajpayee, whose Hindu nationalist party Bharatiya Janata party (BJP), allied to the VHP, came to power in the mid-1990s in a landslide victory, said: "This is a very sad and unfortunate incident.
"The Ayodhya dispute can be solved only by dialogue between Hindus and Muslims or resolved by the court. It cannot be resolved through violent means or agitation.
"I would appeal to the VHP to suspend their campaign and help government in maintaining peace and brotherhood in the country."
But the VHP has called for a state-wide strike to protest against the attack and the more militant members have vowed to continue with the temple's construction.
There have been scattered reports of clashes between Hindus and Muslims in Gujarat after news of the train attack spread.

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