Man quizzed by NIA in 2019 dies in cylinder blast

Updated on Oct 24, 2022 06:18 AM IST

The explosion at a communally sensitive area in Ukkadam prompted state’s top police officers, including director general of police (DGP) C Sylendra Babu, additional DGP (law and order) Thamarai Kannan and forensic officials, rush to the spot.

A 25-year-old man was killed on Sunday after a gas cylinder in his car exploded in Tamil Nadu’s Coimbatore district. (PTI)
A 25-year-old man was killed on Sunday after a gas cylinder in his car exploded in Tamil Nadu’s Coimbatore district. (PTI)
By, Hindustan Times, Chennai

A 25-year-old man was killed on Sunday after a gas cylinder in his car exploded in Tamil Nadu’s Coimbatore district, police said, adding that they have recovered “low-intensive explosive material” from his house.

The explosion at a communally sensitive area in Ukkadam prompted state’s top police officers, including director general of police (DGP) C Sylendra Babu, additional DGP (law and order) Thamarai Kannan and forensic officials, rush to the spot.

The deceased was identified as Jemisha Mubeen (25), an engineering graduate who was questioned by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in 2019, but there was no case or “adverse notice” against him, the DGP told reporters at a press conference on Sunday night.

“But he has been in touch with those who have cases against them,” said Babu. “We are investigating them. They are in our custody.”

A case has been registered at the Ukkadam police station in connection with the incident and a probe was on, the top officer said.

“We found in that vehicle nails, marbles and other stuff which are being examined by the forensic department,” he said. “Following a search at his house we recovered some low intensive explosives — potassium nitrate, aluminium powder, charcoal, Sulphur — used in making country bombs.”

He said these seemed to be meant for some “future” plans, adding that a thorough probe will ascertain the purpose of these items.

“Whoever has been in touch with him for the past year has come under our scanner now,” Babu said, adding investigations so far have not found him to be linked with any groups.

Soon after the incident, police bomb squads and state commando forces were also rushed in. “The body of the deceased is charred and the car completely damaged,” the top officer added.

Meanwhile, police said that six special teams, led by Coimbatore city commissioner K Balakrishanan, have been formed to probe into the incident, adding that officers are collecting evidence and materials from the spot and combing through CCTV footage.

“There were two cylinders inside the car of which one exploded,” the DGP said. “We are investigating from where the cylinders were bought.”

Police have heightened security in the district and asked officers to search vehicles. The police also expanded their operations to other districts, such as Kanyakumari, Villupuram Tirunelveli and Trichy.

“Around 4-4.30 am, a cylinder inside a Maruti 800 exploded. The person who drove the car died on the spot,” said ADGP Kannan, adding they are examining the incident from all angles.

The incident took place on the road near the Kottai Eswaran temple in Ukkadam in the wee hours of Sunday, and fire and rescue services rushed to douse the flames. The area has been restricted from public access.

In the wake of Diwali, over 110,000 police personnel have already been stationed for security, an officer said.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Divya Chandrababu is an award-winning political and human rights journalist based in Chennai, India. Divya is presently Assistant Editor of the Hindustan Times where she covers Tamil Nadu & Puducherry. She started her career as a broadcast journalist at NDTV-Hindu where she anchored and wrote prime time news bulletins. Later, she covered politics, development, mental health, child and disability rights for The Times of India. Divya has been a journalism fellow for several programs including the Asia Journalism Fellowship at Singapore and the KAS Media Asia- The Caravan for narrative journalism. Divya has a master's in politics and international studies from the University of Warwick, UK. As an independent journalist Divya has written for Indian and foreign publications on domestic and international affairs.

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