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regular-article-logo Friday, 19 April 2024

Rameshwaram Cafe blast: Confident of nabbing culprit at the earliest, says Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah

It was still not known whether any organisation was involved in the incident at the quick-service eatery in Brookfield area in the information technology corridor in east Bengaluru

PTI Bengaluru, Mysuru Published 02.03.24, 02:51 PM
Rameshwaram Cafe where a fire broke out after a suspected cylinder explosion in Bengaluru.

Rameshwaram Cafe where a fire broke out after a suspected cylinder explosion in Bengaluru. PTI

As police intensified its probe into the March 1 bomb blast at a city eatery that left 10 injured, the Karnataka government on Saturday expressed confidence that those behind the incident will be nabbed at the earliest based on CCTV images but said it was not possible to specify at the moment if any outfit was involved in the incident.

One person was reportedly detained for questioning late on Friday night over the low intensity blast, but there was no official confirmation.

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The government hinted at the possibility of someone's 'heartburn' as being a reaon for the blast.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has convened a meeting of the Home department to take stock of the situation.

He expressed confidence about nabbing the culprit involved in the blast at The Rameshwaram Cafe, as his movement has been captured by the cameras.

It was still not known whether any organisation was involved in the incident at the quick-service eatery in Brookfield area in the information technology corridor in east Bengaluru.

"One person wearing mask and cap had come by bus, bought Rava Idly from the counter at the cafe and sat down at a place. Then he had set the timer and gone," he told reporters in Mysuru. All the injured persons were safe.

"We will find the culprit, it will be easy as his visuals alighting from the bus, purchasing tiffin at the eatery, sitting at a place and placing a bag have all come. We will find him at the earliest," he added.

Asked about some reports suggesting similarities between the 2022 Mangaluru pressure cooker blast and the Friday's incident, Siddaramaiah said serious investigations are on.

Reacting to opposition's criticism that the government's appeasement politics has led to the incident, he charged the BJP with playing politics on the issue.

To a question on whether the blast was a terrorist act, the CM said: "investigation is going on, we will take action based on what comes out of it." In Bengaluru, Home Minister G Parameshwara said investigators have gathered certain information from CCTV footage.

The footage from the city's public transport buses was also being analysed as part of the probe to nab the culprit.

"Several teams have been formed to investigate. In-depth investigation is going on with seriousness, some traces have been found. Some information has been gathered from CCTV footage...there is information that he (suspect) had come by bus. So, (route number) 26 buses have been verified at Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation (BMTC)," Parameshwara said.

On the basis of the "theory of elimination", more buses are being verified for footage, as BMTC buses have cameras.

"We expect information from it. Gathering all this information, we will nab the culprit. At no cost will we let it go. No matter how much they try to escape, we will not leave them," he added.

At this moment it is not possible to say whether any organisation or an individual was involved, the Home Minister said. There were certain theories during his visit to the cafe last night, expressing suspicion that someone might have done it out of "heartburn", unable to digest the cafe's success and expansion.

"We will look into all angles. Whichever angle it might be, we will verify them and catch the culprits behind the blast," he said.

Asked whether the probe will be handed over to central agencies, Parameshwara said, "we have efficient officers, we have efficient FSLs (Forensic Science Laboratory). We are advanced. FSL team has collected samples, they have gathered information on timer fixed, the capacity of the explosive. It will help the investigation." Meanwhile, the Karnataka police intensified the probe into the blast.

According to official sources, images of the suspect's movement have been captured by the CCTV cameras at Rameshwaram cafe and those nearby.

"We are positive about the leads we are getting in nabbing the culprit," an official said.

The investigating teams are also looking at similarities between Friday's explosion and the November 2022 Mangaluru cooker blast, sources said.

Sleuths from National Investigation Agency (NIA) and National Security Guard (NSG) reached the spot to help the local police in investigation and shared some inputs with them.

In a statement late on Friday night, Divya Raghavendra Rao, Co-Founder & Managing Director of The Rameshwaram Café, said, "we are deeply saddened by the unfortunate incident at our Brookefield branch. We are cooperating with the authorities and officials in their investigations. Our thoughts are with the injured and their families, and we are offering them all the support, assistance and care they need and pray for their speedy recovery."

Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.

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