Yesterday at 9:30 am an explosion blasted out the entire front of the new McDonald’s on Park Street in Kolkata.
A friend of mine who is a Scientology Volunteer Minister emailed me about what happened.
At first everyone thought it was terrorism. Tomorrow and Wednesday are the 60th anniversary of India and Pakistan independence. Tension is high between the India, which is mainly Hindu, and Pakistan, Bangladesh and Kashmir, which are mainly Muslim countries/areas. So the trendy restaurant/disco area that represents Western influence in India would be an obvious target.
McDonald’s opened in March, and my friend told me that on Sunday mornings it is usually packed to overflow with people eating their Mc-breafasts. In fact a whole class of kids from La Martiniere for boys had schedule a breakfast birthday party and would have been in the restaurant if it had blown up half an hour later.
The blast made a missile out of the the metal grill over the front window, killing a young man who was walking by the building. Four employees were hospitalized for burns.
But after the entire site was examined by police and forensic specialists they found no evidence of explosives, and concluded it was cause by something wrong with the high-compression air conditioning system (Hey. I’d rather be hot…)
The Volunteer Ministers were among the first to arrive at the scene. These volunteers have done a lot of training of New Delhi emergency relief workers, and they got right to work providing crowd control, seeing to the proper care of the injured and helping the police and rescue workers.
It was pouring down rain throughout the day, but the VMs stayed and were acknowledged by the police who were very grateful to the VM leader, Mohammad Khalil Ullah and his team’s fast response. The VMs helped with everything from cleaning up the debris to making sure the roads were clogged by rubbernecking motorists.
This was another classic example of what Scientology leader David Miscavige as the most recognizable characteristic of the Scientology Volunteer Ministers: “They have become internationally known and recognized for what has been described as spiritual first aid, and to that end they are ready and organized to respond to any disaster.”
(The man in the yellow VM jacket is Md. Kalhil Ullah, the leader of the West Bengal Scientology Volunteer Ministers.)