An abandoned can at the busy Sitaramdera terminus, which triggered a bomb scare, held up traffic for over two hours and gave Jamshedpur police a tough time on Thursday, was found to contain sugar and milk powder.
The aluminium container, lying in a corner of the gate of the government bus depot, was spotted around 7.30am. People initially thought it to be a can bomb planted by Maoists and panicked.
A huge posse of policemen, led by superintendent of police Kartik S., arrived within 10 minutes and cordoned off the area, blocking traffic on Bhuiyandih-Mango Road and Mango-Sakchi Road.
Several long-distance buses, which were scheduled to leave the terminus from 7.30am onwards, also did not start.
Kartik said: “Soon after getting information that a can, suspected to be containing a bomb, had been found at the bus terminus, we alerted the bomb disposal squad in Ranchi. However, after arriving at the scene and examining the can, we realised that it did not contain explosives. Hence, we decided to dispose it of ourselves.”
Sitaramdera OC Deepak Kumar used two bamboos and a rope to lift the can from the terminus and carry it to Subernarekha banks, 300 metres away.
The can, when opened, was found to contain sugar and milk powder. Policemen disposed of the contents in the river. The drama went on till 10.30am, but the buses started leaving an hour ago.
A passenger, Satyam Prasad, who was supposed to board a Patna-bound bus, said the district police should be better equipped with a full-fledged bomb disposal squad to deal with such situations. “If the police could find out before that the can contained edible items, we would not have been held up for so long unnecessarily,” Prasad rued.