PM visits terror-hit Hyderabad, lends healing touch

Hyderabad, Feb 24 (IANS) Lending a healing touch to victims of terror attacks, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Sunday visited the scenes of twin blasts here and also called on the injured.

Three days after the terrorists struck crowded Dilsukhnagar area, killing 16 people, the prime minister went around the sites and took stock of the situation.

Manmohan Singh, who flew into Hyderabad in an Indian Air Force aircraft, also met the injured at two hospitals. He spoke to them and enquired from the doctors about their condition.

At the Yashoda Hospital, the prime minister assured the victims all possible help from the government. "God bless you," he told one of them.

He saw the x-ray of an injured person and spoke to doctors about the nature of his injuries. One of the victims told the prime minister that he was having snacks at a roadside eatery when the first bomb exploded.

Manmohan Singh also called on V.Rajitha, a MBA student who lost a leg in the terror attack. He asked the doctors to provide the best possible medical help to all the injured.

Kishore, another injured, sought the government's help for securing a job. He said the prime minister assured him that the government would extend all possible help. The M.Tech student sustained severe injuries on his hand and head.

The prime minister also saw eight-year-old Priyanka. "He asked us not to have any fears and promised all assistance," said the girl's mother who was also injured.

About 100 injured are undergoing treatment at six hospitals and the condition of six of them is critical. The prime minister visited two corporate hospitals which are close to Dilsukhnagar.

Manmohan Singh said he was visiting Hyderabad to share grief and sorrow of the people. He praised the people of Hyderabad for maintaining calm after the terror attacks.

"It is most important that in this hour of grief, people should maintain calm," he told Doordarshan News.

"I am very happy in that way. Hyderabad people have refused to be provoked by this nefarious act of terrorists," he said.

"I pray for the speedy recovery of the injured. To those who died, I send my condolences to the bereaved families.

"I have been assured by the state government that the best possible medical care is being made available to the injured," Manmohan Singh said.

The prime minister avoided road travel during his visit apparently due to security reasons.

After landing at the Begumpet airport at 11 a.m., he flew in a helicopter to Victoria Memorial School near Dilsukhnagar. He then drove about 2.5 km to reach the first blast site amid tight security.

The prime minister first stopped at the Anand Tiffin Centre in front of Konark Theatre in Dilsukhnagar, where the first bomb blast had occurred Thursday evening.

Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy and Director General of Police V. Dinesh Reddy briefed him about the terror attack. He walked up to the scene of the second blast, a few meters away.

After spending an hour visiting the two sites and the hospitals, Manmohan Singh flew back to the Begumpet airport.

Before returning to Delhi after his two-and-half hour visit, he held a meeting with Andhra Pradesh Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan, the chief minister and some top police officials, who briefed him about the progress made in the investigations so far.

Hyderabad Police Commissioner Anurag Sharma told reporters that the prime minister enquired about how the incidents happened and what actions were taken after the blasts.

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