Hyderabad Bomb Blast
People injured in the Hyderabad bomb blasts are treated at a hospital. 

As the death toll in the twin blasts in Indian city of Hyderabad continues to rise, the Indian Mujahideen (IM) has emerged as the initial suspect in the terror attack.

Fourteen people have been confirmed dead, and 13 bodies have been identified. A further 119 people were injured in the explosions.

Five young students were among those killed in the blast, and the majority of those injured are aged between 19 and 22.

While some reports are linking the blasts with the recent hanging of Kashmiri activist Afzal Guru for plotting the 2001 attack on India's parliament, the police say that Hyderabad was on the Mujahideen's radar for nearly a year.

According to a police press release, alleged Indian Mujahideen operatives Syed Maqbool and Imran Khan were involved in plotting the attack, in tandem with Riyaz Bhatkal, a key figure in the movemewnt.

The release claimed: "About a month before Ramzan in 2012, Maqbool helped Imran in doing a recce of Dilkhush (Dillsukh) Nagar, Begum Bazar and Abids in Hyderabad on a motorcycle. This was done on the instruction of Riyaz."

Besides, the ingredients used in the explosives reportedly point to the involvement of the Islamist organisation.

The Mujahideen is believed to have used bicycles to plant bombs in the past, notably in the western Indian city of Pune.

In the aftermath of the blasts, it has also emerged that there were intelligence inputs about a possible terror strike, although the alert was not specific.

Bangalore, Hubli and Coimbatore in south India were mentioned as possible targets. The intelligence report also reportedly spoke about the revival of the IM and Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba in India.

India's Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde, who visited the two blast sites in Hyderabad, said the intelligence alert was general in nature.

He said it was too early to say who was responsible for the attack.

Shinde confirmed the bombs were planted on bicycles 150m (500ft) apart from each other in a busy fruit market. The blasts took place outside a small restaurant, close to a bus stand and two cinemas.

The second bomb was placed at exactly the same spot where an unexploded bomb was found in the twin blasts in 2007.

The Australian cricket team, now touring India, has reportedly held talks with Indian authorities regarding players' safety. The team is due to play a Test match in Hyderabad from 2 March.

This article was updated November 30, -0001 00:00 AM
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