Courthouse complexes in the Indian state of Uttar Pradesh were hit by a series of bombings, killing 14. Three explosions in Varanasi killed 11 lawyers. The Ganges river flows through Varanasi and Hindus revere it as one of the holiest cities in India. Two individuals were killed in Faizabad, near the town of Ayodhya, where Hindu nationalists destroyed the 16th century Babri Mosque. The mosque was built on top of a temple to the Hindu deity Ram, believed by devotees to be the avatar’s birthplace. The mosque was torn down with the intention of building a new temple to Ram in its place. This event sparked widespread Hindu-Muslim riots in 1992. Reports in the Indian press speculate that the bombs were intended to trigger similar communal violence. One person was killed in the city of Lucknow
A previously unknown group, the Indian Mujahideen, declared responsibility.
The Hindu: Uttar Pradesh bombings mark new phase of Islamist terror
Investigators believe an e-mail sent minutes after the serial court bombings in Uttar Pradesh began is a first-of-its kind manifesto for Islamist terror cells operating across India.
Issued by an until-now unknown organisation, the Indian Mujahideen, the e-mail was sent from guru_alHindi@yahoo.fr, a purpose-generated address created on November 22, to several national television stations.
Arguing that the court bombings were carried out because the Uttar Pradesh police arrested “two innocent groups and frame[d] them in fake charges” after which “lawyer[s] of these places beaten those innocent group members,” the Indian Mujahideen mail insisted that its members “are not any foreign mujahideen nor even we have any attachment with neighbouring countries agency like ISI, LET, HUJI etc.”
Starting out with an invocation from the Quran calling on believers to fight impiety, the e-mail seeks to legitimise Islamist terrorism in India. Much of its content revolves around Hindu fundamentalist attacks on Muslims. The 1992-93 pogrom in Mumbai and the 2002 carnage in Gujarat, the e-mail states, “forced us to take strong stand against this injustice and all other wounds given by the idol worshipers of India.”
However, the e-mail concludes: “This is not the war between two communities, but this is war for civilisation. We want to empower the society from injustice, corruption etc. which is prevailing in the society nowadays. Only Islam has the power to establish a civilised society and this could be only possible in Islamic rule, which could be achieved by only one path JIHAD [sic.].”
The targeting of lawyers by the Islamists was intentional. Lawyers are increasingly expressing their unwillingness to defend terror suspects. On Friday (Nov. 30), lawyers stayed home from work in a symbolic protest against terrorism and as a gesture of solidarity with those killed and injured.
Indian Express: BJP to make UPA’s ‘soft-on-terror’ policy its poll plank
“The recent terror strikes in Uttar Pradesh have exposed the soft-on-terror policy of the UPA Government,” the party said in a resolution adopted at a meeting of the office-bearers in Delhi this morning.
“The Indian Parliament and symbols of India’s religious and cultural diversity have been attacked in the past. Centres of India’s economic growth have also been attacked. Now judicial centres are under terrorist attacks The UP attacks were symbolic of the terrorists’ ability to strike at will,” the resolution said.
The Wall Street Journal: Sadanand Dhume, India Appeases Radical Islam
Friday’s multiple bomb blasts in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh — which killed 13 people and injured about 80 — ought to give pause to those who see the world’s largest democracy as a linchpin in the war on terror. India’s leaders and diplomats seek to portray the country as a firebreak against radical Islam, or the drive to impose the medieval Arab norms enshrined in Shariah law on 21st century life. In reality, India is ill- equipped to fight this scourge.
Also see: Times of India