Kerala

Hoax bomb threat at shrine

The police searching the premises of the Velankanni Mata shrine in Kollam following a bomb threat on Wednesday.

The police searching the premises of the Velankanni Mata shrine in Kollam following a bomb threat on Wednesday.  

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A bomb threat at the Velankanni Mata shrine in the city on Wednesday afternoon proved to be a hoax.

The shrine is a unit of the Thuyyam Saint Sebastian’s parish under the Kollam Latin Catholic Diocese. At about 12.10 p.m. the vicar of the parish Fr. Jolly Abraham received an anonymous phone call informing that a bomb has been placed inside the shrine and that it is timed to explode at 5 p.m. The vicar informed the officers of the Kollam East police station.

Wednesday being the weekly veneration day at the shrine, there were special rituals. The shrine was crowded with devotees when the police arrived with the bomb squad. The police scanned the shrine without disturbing the rituals. But devotees sensed something amiss when the police used metal detectors and the sniffer dog got to work. Soon word spread about the bomb threat, triggering panic. Later, the police announced that the threat was a hoax. The phone number of the caller, which appeared on the vicar’s phone, was given to the police. The police said the call was made from the city itself. The person in whose name the SIM card was bought has also been identified.

The police said the case had been handed over to the Cyber Cell for further probe. The vespers to be held at the shrine in the evening were held in the parish church.

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Printable version | Jan 25, 2020 10:40:00 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/hoax-bomb-threat-at-shrine/article7816739.ece

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