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2 arrested in backyard blast case

Bolpur, April 23: Birbhum police today arrested suspected Trinamul worker Ismail Sheikh, in whose backyard a blast had killed two youths allegedly hired to make crude bombs ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.

The police arrested another suspected Trinamul worker, who was injured in the blast on Monday and had been hiding in Ismail’s home since.

Ismail, who had apparently switched to Trinamul from the Forward Bloc along with Trinamul MLA Manirul Islam in 2009, was arrested in the afternoon from a tea stall around 1.5km from his home in Labhpur. Ismail will be produced in court tomorrow.

District Trinamul chief Anubrata Mondal had denied Ismail was a party worker.

Sheikh Naimuddin, the other suspected Trinamul worker arrested early today, has been remanded in 14 days’ police custody.

Around 150 crude bombs had gone off together in Ismail’s backyard on Monday, killing two and injuring at least six in the first deaths in a blast this poll season.

An official said Birbhum district magistrate J.P. Meena today sent a report to the Election Commission on the blast.