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Egra blast-accused Krishnapada Bag a.k.a. Bhanu found in Odisha hospital

Bag was spotted along with his son Biswajit and nephew Indrajit at health facility on NH5 following joint hunt by CID officers and East Midnapore police

Kinsuk Basu, Anshuman Phadikar Calcutta Published 19.05.23, 05:41 AM
The firecracker factory soon after the blast near Egra on Tuesday

The firecracker factory soon after the blast near Egra on Tuesday PTI picture

Krishnapada Bag a.k.a. Bhanu, the absconding owner of the illegal firework factory in Egra’s Khadikul village, was found in a private hospital in Cuttack, Odisha, early on Thursday.

Bag was spotted along with his son Biswajit and nephew Indrajit at the health facility on NH5 following a joint hunt by officers of the CID and East Midnapore police.


The three were on the run since Tuesday’s blast that killed nine persons and injured several others prompting the state government to hand over the probe to the CID.

While Biswajit and Indrajit were arrested, police said they detained Bag owing to his health condition. Doctors at the hospital informed the police that Bag was admitted with over 70 per cent burn injuries and his condition was “quite critical”.

“There are severe burn injuries on Bag’s head, chest, hips and legs. He has been kept under intensive observation and doctors said shifting him to a health care unit in Calcutta isn’t feasible,” said a senior police officer. “We have sought the Odisha police’s help to keep him under constant monitoring.”

Bag’s son and nephew were arrested based on a case drawn up against them at Egra police station. The CID on Wednesday drew up an FIR under different sections of the Indian Penal Code, including 304 (causing death by negligence) and 286 (negligent conduct with explosives) as well as specific sections under Fire Services Act. The FIR did not mention provisions under the Explosive Substances Act, but on Thursday, a division bench of Calcutta High Court led by Chief Justice T.S. Sivagnanam on Thursday directed the state to add the charges to the existing FIR.

The investigators said it was crucial to question Bag on several matters including his workers and clients, but interrogation would have to wait till his condition improved.

The Egra blast prompted a series of search operations across Birbhum, Hooghly and North 24-Parganas during the day. Around 500kg explosives, used to manufacture firecrackers, were found in Chanditalla, Hooghly, and five persons held. In Birbhum’s Nalhati, police raided several shops and recovered explosives.

No NIA probe

Calcutta High Court on Thursday declined to order a probe by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) into the blast at the illegal firecracker factory in East Midnapore but directed the CID to register charges under the Explosives Act against the accused.

A division bench headed by Chief Justice T.S. Sivagnanam rejected the plea by the leader of the Opposition, Suvendu Adhikari, to transfer the investigation to the NIA from the CID.

The also court sought the submission of a progress report on the CID probe by June 12.

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