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Multiple bombings kill scores, rattling northeastern India

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Reuters describes the scenes of the blasts as chaotic and devastating.

Firefighters doused smouldering remains of cars and motorcycles at one of the blast sites in Guwahati. One of the blasts targeted a high security zone with a court as well as offices and homes of senior police officials.
Many of the blasts were in crowded markets in the state....
Television channels showed some people lying on the streets...
Some of the walking wounded were helped into ambulances by local people and police.

Protesters took to the streets within minutes, reports The Hindu.

Angry mobs in Guwahati went on a rampage, attacking and torching police vehicles, fire tenders and buses and pelted stones on police barricades at the blast sites.
A group of people shouting slogans against the government carried a body in a handcart to the gate of the Secretariat complex here.
A rattled Chief Minister vowed to deal firmly with the situation. It is the handiwork of anti-national extremist forces, [he] said in a statement.

No group has claimed responsibility for the bombings, but The New York Times reports that local authorities are blaming the United Liberation Front of Asom (ULFA), which has been fighting for Assamese independence since 1979.

In 2004, The Christian Science Monitor described the region as diverse and at times simmering with tension:

The region is both physically and culturally distant from the rest of India. The diversity here is staggering. The region's seven states are home to more than 200 different ethnic groups that include Christians, Hindus, animists, Muslims, and even a tribe believed to be Jewish. More than 7,400 civilians, 2,100 security personnel, and 4,500 alleged militants have died in a dozen ethnic and religious conflicts throughout the northeast since 1992.
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