A joint team of the National Investigation Agency and the National Security Guard’s bomb detection and disposal squad from New Delhi landed in a special flight in Patna around 6.30 p.m., hours after the series of explosions.

The team comprised three officers of the rank of Deputy Inspector-General and a Superintendent of Police.

President Pranab Mukherjee condemned the explosions and conveyed his condolences to the families of the deceased and prayers for full recovery of the injured.

Manmohan’s appeal

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh expressed his deep concern and called for urgent steps to act against those responsible for the blasts. He appealed to people to maintain peace and calm. He spoke to Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and assured him of all Central assistance in the investigation.

A senior NIA officer said: “We are told that the local police have arrested at least one man… While the probe at this stage will be carried out by the Patna police, our job will be to minutely study the… sites. It will also help us probe the case effectively if it is handed over to us later,”

The NSG will collect evidence from the sites. Explosive experts will also examine four unexploded devices found at two places on Gandhi Maidan, the venue of the rally.