11 September 2001>News Stories>More Than $4.5 Billion Pledged in Afghan Aid Effort

More Than $4.5 Billion Pledged in Afghan Aid Effort

Howard W. French . NY Times . 22 January 2002

Tight security has been in force in India in recent weeks

Four armed men riding two motorcycles have attacked the American Centre building near the US consulate in the eastern Indian city of Calcutta, killing four policemen.
Police said the men approached the building at about at 6.15am local time (0045GMT), refusing to stop at checkpoints and firing on the police guards who returned fire.

Seventeen other guards were injured in the attack, at least four critically, and doctors said the death toll could rise.

They were all from the Calcutta police or a private security agency, Group Four.

No militant group has so far said it was behind the shootings but local intelligence sources said that they suspected the involvement of an Islamic radical group active in India.

Three of the officers were killed on the spot, while another died on the way to hospital.

The US consul-general in Calcutta, Christopher Sandrolini, said no consular staff were injured or killed in the raid.

The American Centre, one of two US Government buildings in Calcutta, houses the US Information Service library, as well as the embassy's public-affairs office, the press section, and a wing where cultural events are held.

Security at American missions in India had been stepped up since the 11 September attacks in the US.

The authorities in India also increased security in the wake of the attack on the Indian parliament last month.