At least 55 people have been killed as a train carrying Hindus was attacked and set on fire by Moslems in the western state of Gujarat.
The train was carrying thousands of Hindu radicals from the right-wing VHP faction from a trip to the disputed holy site of Ayodha. Ten years ago, Hindu extremists burnt down a Mosque here and now the VHP intends to construct a Hindu temple on the same site. Before the train could reach its destination at Ahmadabad, it was set upon by a crowd.
At first, there was a heated exchange of words between the passengers and those on the platform at Godhia. This turned into stone-throwing and then the train’s petrol tank was set on fire. Four carriages were engulfed in flames, killing (to date) 25 men, 15 women and 14 children.
President Vajpayee of India has called for calm and has expressed his outrage at the incident. In recent hours, there have been a number of revenge attacks by Hindus against Moslems in Gujarat.
Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY PRAVDA.Ru
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