Caller says it was a prank and apologises to the police

The Cantonment police detained a 20-year-old youth in connection with the bomb hoax that caused quite a flutter in railway stations, bus stands, and crowded market places in the city on Thursday.

The police said they received the “threatening call” at the control room around 4.45 p.m. The caller claimed to have placed bombs at all “crowded places” in the city.

The call emanated from a mobile phone. Control room officials immediately called back on the number. They said it was attended by a man who claimed the call was a prank and apologised to the police for being a nuisance.

However, the police took no chances and ordered a full-fledged anti-sabotage check at Thampanoor and Veil railway stations, important market places, bus terminals, and shopping malls. The checks, which commenced at 4.50 p.m. concluded only at night. The anti-sabotage check, which involved police dogs and explosive experts wielding sophisticated bomb detection equipment, caught shoppers and pedestrians by surprise.

Railways checked platforms for unclaimed baggage and other suspicious looking articles. They also scoured the tracks.

Meanwhile, a police team triangulated the position of the caller and located his house. They entered the residence and arrested a man who was present there. The police said the youth claimed innocence and said a friend of his could have misused his mobile phone to make the prank call without his knowledge. A police team has gone to Pangode in the outskirts of the city to detain the youth’s friend. So far, the police have arrested no one in connection with the incident.