A bomb hoax led to the evacuation of 1,500 employees and a massive search at a 14-storey building in the IT hub of Rajarhat on the city outskirts on Wednesday. The hoax was traced to a youth who had been turned down for a job there a few months ago, police said.
An anonymous call reportedly made at Rajarhat police station claimed that the Technopolis building, which houses several IT firms, would be blown up. The caller said the bomb was in the ground floor of the building in Rajarhat in North 24-Parganas district.
"Nothing was found after hours of a long and thorough search. The bomb scare occurred after a hoax call made by a youth, Somnath Dhol, who was later arrested," district superintendent of police Rahul Srivasthav said.
Police said Dhol is an unemployed youth who had gone there for a job a few months back but was rejected.
Debabrata Das, additional superintendent of police, Salt Lake, said: "Immediately after the anonymous call, huge contingents of police along with the officials of the fire and emergency services department rushed to the spot."
"The entire building was cordoned off within a 100-m radius and all the employees were asked to come down gradually."
"Bomb squads and dog squads were called in and search operations started. After the first round of extensive search at the basement, groundfloor and first floor, nothing suspicious was found," said a senior police officer.
Onlookers, including a few employees, however, alleged that bomb squad personnel arrive two hours after being informed about the incident.
Meanwhile, a scuffle broke out between photojournalists and the security guards of the Technopolis building. During the emergency evacuation of over 1,500 employees from the building, the journalists tried to enter into the premises, breaching the cordon put up by the private security personnel.
Police had to intervene and one policeman was also manhandled by the irate mob, police said.