New Delhi: As many as eight suicide bomb blasts rocked three cities of Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday, killing as many as 290 people and injuring 500 others.
The attacks began with six coordinated bomb blasts at 8.45 a.m. at three luxury hotels in Colombo and three churches around the country during Easter services.
A few hours later, a seventh blast rocked a small hotel near the Dehiwala Zoo, about 12 km south of the capital, while an eighth explosion took place at a residential compound in Dematagoda in Colombo.
Some 24 people have been arrested in connection with the bombings, which are yet to be claimed by any group and can damage the tourism sector in the island country.
The government on Monday blamed a Sri Lankan Muslim outfit for the horrific serial bombings and said the attacks were “a colossal intelligence failure”. The National Thowheed Jamath (NTJ) carried out the eight explosions across three cities in Sri Lanka, also injuring over 500 people, the government told the media.
The Sri Lankan government has announced a new curfew from 8 p.m. Monday to 4 a.m. on Tuesday.
As many as eight Indian nationals are among the 290 killed in the serial bombing attack. On Monday morning, the Indian High Commission in Colombo confirmed the names of two more Indian victims.
“We sadly confirm the deaths of the following two individuals in the blasts yesterday: K.G. Hanumantharayappa, M. Rangappa,” the Mission said in a tweet. Karnataka Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy said Hanumantharayappa and Rangappa were part of a seven-member team of Janata Dal-Secular (JD-S) party, who were touring Colombo. The fate of the rest of the members was not known yet.