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Sikh separatists claimed responsibility today for a car bomb that killed 16 people in northern India, including Punjab chief minister Beant Singh, outside government headquarters. But New Delhi bureau chief Dick Thompson reports that that Punjabi Sikhs are so disgusted by the violence that the incident promises to splinter the minority drive for independence. "The last few years have witnessed a relative peace here and some remarkable agricultural prosperity, and already there's a palpable resentment that the violence could come back as a result of this." Before Singh, Thompson says, Hindus were commonly hauled out of public buses and summarily shot. "Replacing that kind of broad, chaotic violence will probably be more of these selective bombings, which still aren't likely to put the Sikhs closer to their goal of independence."