The Detection of Crime Branch (DCB) of the city police has achieved its first major breakthrough in the July 26 serial blasts, which confirms involvement of local operatives.
Investigations by the police and forensic officials has established that the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders used in the blast at the Civil Hospital, which claimed the maximum number of lives in all the 23 blasts, were bought from a local supplier in Kalupur area. The supplying agency has been identified as Bhamani Enterprises and the owner is being interrogated.
Hindustan Times had first reported on July 28 about use of LPG cylinders in the blast at the Civil Hospital. The bomb became more lethal as the cylinder, similar to the ones used to light lanterns, acted as a missile when it exploded. The blast had claimed lives of 26 persons, including two medicos, and rendered more than 50 injured.
Confirming the finding, Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Ashish Bhatia said that the dealer had been identified and further investigations are in progress. He refused to divulge more information. However, police officials say that at least five cylinders were bought by two youths in the age group of 22 years to 28 years three days before the blasts. Police is now trying to establish their identity through a string of local informers on the basis of the description given by the owner of Bhamani Enterprises.
“We suspect even the wood used to make the crates for planting the assembled improvised explosive devices (IEDs) was procured from local sources as the particular kind of low quality wood used here is mainly used to make fruit crates and is freely available here,” an investigator revealed on conditions of anonymity. Investigators says that the C-shaped wooden crates were designed so as to give direction to the explosion for maximum impact, which is commonly seen in direction bombs like a Claymore mine.
Meanwhile, the DCB is seeking all the assistance it can in establishing identity of the perpetrators. And for this purpose, it has asked the Rajasthan police to share with it the sketches of suspects it had prepared after the serial blasts at Jaipur on May 13, which killed 65.
Meanwhile, panic gripped the diamond city of Surat once again on Sunday with the recovery of yet another bomb from the posh Athwa Lines area in the afternoon. The live bomb, much similar to the ones defused in the city throughout the week, was spotted by an employee of the Surat Municipal Corporation near the Chowpatty Garden around 1.30 pm. J.M. Patel, who had deactivated most of the other bombs recovered in Surat during the last one week, defused this one too.
(With inputs from Rathin Das)