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By Shafiq Mohammed
HYDERABAD, India, Feb 22 (Reuters) - India had intelligence warnings of a security threat several days before two bicycle bombs ripped through a market in the southern city of Hyderabad, the home minister said on Friday, adding that the death toll had risen to 14.
Six people were in critical condition after the near-simultaneous blasts on Thursday, Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said after visiting the site and one of seven hospitals treating victims among the 119 wounded.
Police were deployed throughout Hyderabad to prevent outbreaks of violence between Hindus and Muslims in the city, which has recently witnessed tension between the two communities. Similar attacks have led to clashes.
The Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, the main opposition force in the country, called a one-day strike in Hyderabad on Friday to protest against the attack.
No group had claimed responsibility and Shinde said it was too early to make accusations.
Shinde said that the federal government had warned states of an unspecified threat earlier in the week.
"No intelligence was given that a particular area it will happen. A general alert was given in the past two to three days to the whole country. And that's all," he told reporters.
Hyderabad is a major IT centre in India, only second to Bangalore. Microsoft and Google have major centres in the city. The blasts happened in a market near a middle-class neighbourhood across the city from the business district.
The explosions come less than two weeks after India hanged a Kashmiri man called Afzal Guru for a militant attack on the country's parliament in 2001.
Authorities say a suitcase bomb that killed 17 at Delhi High Court in 2011 was planted by militants who wanted Guru's death sentence commuted. (Writing by Frank Jack Daniel; Additional reporting by Satarupa Bhattacharjya and Annie Banerji; Editing by Nick Macfie)