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Bomb blasts in Kozhikode

TAKING A CLOSE LOOK: District Collector Rachna Shah and City Police Commissioner H. Venkatesh examining the remains of a bomb that exploded near the KSRTC bus station in Kozhikode on Friday. Photo: S. Ramesh Kurup

TAKING A CLOSE LOOK: District Collector Rachna Shah and City Police Commissioner H. Venkatesh examining the remains of a bomb that exploded near the KSRTC bus station in Kozhikode on Friday. Photo: S. Ramesh Kurup  



Special Correspondent

Two injured; police mount search operations

KOZHIKODE: The police have launched a massive hunt for those behind the two explosions that triggered panic in Kozhikode on Friday.

Talking to mediapersons, City Police Commissioner H. Venkatesh said preliminary inquiries indicated that country-made explosive materials and mechanical devices were used to set off the explosion. According to first reports, the blasts were of low-to-medium intensity.

The first blast occurred at the KSRTC bus station on Mavoor Road at 12.45 p.m. The second one, hardly 10 minutes later, was at the private mofussil bus stand, less than a kilometre away. The blasts created panic in the city amid rumours that there would be more explosions.

In the blast at the mofussil bus stand, Unni, a policeman attached to Kasaba station, and Ashraf, a headload worker, suffered minor injuries. None was hurt in the explosion near the cloak room at the KSRTC station. The windowpane of a private hotel located next to the KSRTC bus station was shattered in the impact.

The Commissioner said that acting on a tip-off, police teams had rushed to the bus stand. Just as the police began their search operations, the first explosive went off at the KSRTC stand.

He said 30 minutes before the blasts went off, an eveninger, Calicut Times, had received an anonymous call warning that bombs would explode at the KSRTC stand and the mofussil bus stand.

The Special Branch police was informed about the incident. Additional District Magistrate (ADM) P. Koyakutty also received a similar anonymous call in his office.

District Collector Rachna Shah and the City Police Commissioner visited the blast sites soon after the incident. A special police team has been put in charge of the investigation, said Mr. Venkatesh. The explosions caused panic in the city. In January, the police had seized gelignite sticks capable of setting off explosions from the cloak room of the KSRTC bus stand. In September last, a week before elections to the local bodies, a fishing boat berthed at Beypore harbour was destroyed in a bomb explosion minutes before the fishermen were about to set out to the sea in the vessel.

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