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Special team to probe recovery of steel bombs

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VIGIL: Policemen searching for weapons in Marad following the recovery of steel bombs on the beach on Tuesday. Photo: S. Ramesh Kurup
VIGIL: Policemen searching for weapons in Marad following the recovery of steel bombs on the beach on Tuesday. Photo: S. Ramesh Kurup

Staff Reporter

Police personnel carry out massive raids on the Marad beach

Kozhikode: A Special Investigation Team (SIT) has been constituted to probe the recovery of steel bombs from the communally sensitive Marad beach here on Monday. Assistant Commissioner of Police (Administration) T.K. Rajmohan heads the team.

The decision was taken after a discussion between Kannur Range Deputy Inspector-General of Police S. Ananthakrishnan and Kozhikode City Police Commissioner Balram Kumar Upadhyay on Tuesday.

Children who were playing on the beach near the Marad police station in the evening spotted five country-made steel bombs. The explosives were concealed in a plastic cover.

Security steps

On Tuesday, the city police carried out massive raids in the Marad region. Around 100 police personnel divided into six teams took part in the raids from morning till evening. Assistant Commissioner of Police K. Jayechandran led the operation. Policemen from the Armed Reserve Camp, Special Branch, Bomb Detection Squad and local police were pressed into service.

Mr. Ananthakrishnan said the search was conducted to find out whether more explosives were buried in the coastal village. Someone might have abandoned these bombs. The existing security measures would continue in the costal belt, he said.

Marad had witnessed a communal clash in January 2002 and a one-sided attack in May 2003. At least five persons were killed in the communal conflagration and nine fishermen in the May 2 massacre. The police had seized a large cache of swords and bombs from various places including a place of worship during their investigation at that time.

The recovery of steel bombs exposes the chinks in the armour of the existing police security arrangements in the seaside village. Over 100 police personnel led by an ACP have been deployed for duty at Marad since May 2, 2003.

Checking is done at various points. Outsiders are also denied entry to Marad. Searches are also usually conducted during various anniversaries including December 6, the day when the Babri Masjid was demolished.

Mr. Ananthakrishnan said that searches were being carried out at the communally sensitive areas of Nadapuram and Kuttiyadi in the district in the wake of the seizures of bombs in these areas. Two country-made bombs were recovered from Kummangodi in the district on Sunday. Three kg of gun power and detonators were recovered from a jeep at Kallachi.

The police have intensified security in the wake of the visit of Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan at Nadapuram on Sunday. He is expected to participate in a peace rally there.

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