Tuesday 28 June 2022
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Chennai bombings: investigation still inconclusive

A study of CCTV footages at the Chennai Central Station, Bangalore City Railway station and those between Bangalore and Chennai has led the CB- police probing the explosion to zero in on some “positive” leads, a senior official involved in the investigation said in Chennai. He said “some more suspects have been identified” but declined to elaborate, saying it would hamper investigations.

The explosives that went off on the Bangalore-Guwahati Express at Chennai Central on May Day were assembled inside a toilet of the S7 coach, reveals investigation, but detonated in a different coach. Explosives have confirmed that the bombs were detonated with the help of a timer device. An investigating said, “There was sufficient amount of ammonium nitrate used in both explosives. No RDX was used.” A source close to the investigators had said on Saturday, “We scanned through all the bogies of Guwahati Express, particularly S4, S5, S6 and S7, for evidence.”

From the CCTV footage, a man who hurriedly got down from the targeted train had been spotted wearing a handkerchief to his face in CCTV footages of Bangalore railway station, police sources said on Saturday. It has been found that in the Bangalore footages, which have been examined by experts, the man who had covered his face with handkerchief was the same person who was seen running at the Chennai Central Railway Station platform, thus strengthening police’s suspicion. He was seen running towards the exit minutes before the blast, in the CCTV footages of Chennai Central railway station. He got down from coach S3, next to S4 and S5 coaches, which bore the brunt of the blasts.

Tamil Nadu Police on Friday had said that they suspected the role of a “bald man” who disembarked from the train and ran away before the twin bomb blasts and would like to question him during investigation. Speaking to reporters, Inspector General of Police at the Crime Branch-Criminal Investigation Department (CB-CID) Maheshkumar Agarwal said, “We found the movements of a bald person getting down from the S3 coach and running away as unusual from the CCTV footage. His movements were unusual.” The two bombs were placed in S4 and S5 coaches.

As part of the probe into the twin blasts on the Bangalore-Guwahati Express, special teams of the Crime Branch- had been sent to Guwahati and Patna on 1 May.

Armed with the CCTV footage of two persons who were found moving in a suspicious manner in the Bangalore and Chennai Central railway stations, investigators made inquiries with some passengers who travelled in S-4 and S-5 coaches up to Guwahati.

After preliminary inquiries, the police and National Security Guard (NSG) officials had revealed that the explosives were similar to those used in the Patna blasts. So another team was sent to Patna. “We want to examine the suspects arrested in the multiple blasts in Patna, which occurred hours before BJP leader Narendra Modi was to address an election there,” a CB- official had said.

With today’s statements from the investigation, it is clear the police are still exploring possibilities. They have not drawn any conclusion about the terrorist or the terror outfit that carried out the twin bombings.

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