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Amritsar blast: Preliminary investigations reveal two men with covered faces forced entry into hall, says CM

Amritsar blast updates: A blast at a spiritual gathering in Amritsar’s Nirankari Bhawan on Sunday killed at least three people and injured 10, police said.

By HT Correspondent | Nov 18, 2018 21:00 IST

A blast at a spiritual gathering in Amritsar’s Nirankari Bhawan on Sunday killed at least three people and injured 20, police said.

Two armed men on a motorcycle forced their way into a building where the Nirankari spiritual group was meeting, in Rajasansi area in Punjab’s Amritsar, according to eyewitnesses.

They brandished their pistol while entering the premises before throwing a hand grenade at the crowd, said the bystanders.

Here are the updates :

8:18pm IST

Preliminary investigations reveal two men forced entry into hall: CM

In his statement, the Chief Minister Amarinder Singh said the preliminary investigations have revealed that two men - one of them with a flowing beard and both with their faces covered - forced their entry into the hall, brandishing a pistol.

They detained the sewadar, lobbed the grenade into the prayer room and fled on a motorcycle on which they had come, he added.

A small crater was formed by the impact of the explosion and was being examined by the forensic team, Amarinder Singh said, adding that the safety valve of the grenade too has been found and was being examined. Read more

7:45pm IST

3-member NIA team to reach blast site today

Three member team of the National Investigation Agency to reach the blast site in Amritsar today, reports ANI.

7:07pm IST

Perpetrators will not be spared: Arun Jaitley

6:59pm IST

Police teams rushed to raid suspected hideouts of the assailants: Punjab CM

The possibility of involvement of ISI-based Khalistani/Kashmiri terror groups could not be ruled out. Police teams have been rushed to raid suspected hideouts of the assailants and multiple teams are investigating various angles to crack the case: Punjab CM Capt Amarinder Singh

6:23pm IST

First bombs, now grenade attack: Harsimrat Kaur Badal

4.50 pm IST

Punjab police say attack appears to be a ‘terrorist act’

“It (this incident) appears to have a terror angle. Because it is against a group (of people) and it is not against any individual. There is no reason to throw a hand grenade on a group of people, so we will take it as a terrorist act. Till proven otherwise, prima facie we will take it as that,” Punjab Director General of Police Suresh Arora told PTI. Read more

4.45 pm IST

Got enough leads, say Home ministry officials

There are “enough leads” and the probe is going in the right direction, but it is too early to come to any conclusion, home ministry officials said.

4.30 pm IST

Spot visuals from Nirankari Bhawan in Amritsar

Visuals from inside the Nirankari Bhawan premises in Amritsar. ( ANI/Twitter )
3:27 pm IST

Strongest possible action will be taken against perpetrators:Rajnath Singh

Spoke to the Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh ji who has apprised me of the situation in the wake of grenade attack in Amritsar. Strongest possible action will be taken against the perpetrators of this crime: Home Minister Rajnath Singh. Read more

3:25 pm IST

Reprehensible act of violence: Rajnath Singh

“Deeply anguished by death of innocent people in grenade attack in Amritsar in Punjab today. It’s a reprehensible act of violence. My condolences to the families who have lost their loved ones in this attack & prayers for speedy recovery of the injured, said Union home Minster Rajnath Singh

3:05 pm IST

Won’t let forces of terror destroy our peace: Punjab CM 

“I appeal to the people of Punjab to maintain peace in wake of Amritsar bomb blast. I urge them not to panic and to remain calm. We will not let the forces of terror destroy our hard earned peace,” said Punjab CM.

2:50 pm IST

Punjab CM reviews law and order situation in Punjab

Punjab CM Amarinder Singh reviewed the law and order situation in the state in the wake of the grenade attack on a religious congregation on the outskirts of Amritsar city which left three persons dead. While reviewing the law and order situation, Singh directed the Home Secretary, DGP, DG (Law and Order) and DG Intelligence to rush to Rajasansi in Amritsar to supervise investigations, an official spokesman said here.

2:33 pm IST

Punjab CM Amarinder Singh announces Rs 5 lakh ex-gratia

Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh has announced Rs 5 lakh compensation for the kin of the dead and free treatment for the injured.

2:23 pm IST

A cowardly act: Kejriwal

AAP convener and Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal has called the grenade attack on the spiritual gathering in Amritsar “a cowardly act”.

2:02 pm IST

AAP’s HS Phoolka condemns Amritsar grenade attack

AAP leader and leader of the opposition in the Punjab legislative assembly HS Phoolka condemned the attack, calling it a “ghastly act of killing innocents.”

“This reminds us Maur blasts conducted by followers of Ram Rahim and Congress candidate in 2017,” he said.

1:37 pm IST

Injured admitted in Guru Nanak Dev and Ivy hospital in Amritsar

The injured have been admitted in Guru Nanak Dev Hospital and Ivy Hospital in Amritsar, police said, adding that they are investigating the blast.