Investigators close to locating suspect of Rameshwaram Cafe blast: Parameshwara | Latest News India - Hindustan Times

Investigators close to locating suspect of Rameshwaram Cafe blast: Parameshwara

Mar 12, 2024 08:09 AM IST

Progress made in identifying suspect in March 1 blast at Rameshwaram Cafe, Bengaluru. NIA and CCB actively pursuing leads to locate the suspect.

Bengaluru: Home minister G Parameshwara on Monday said, progress has been made in identifying the suspect involved in the March 1 blast at The Rameshwaram Cafe.

Ten people were injured in the blast at The Rameshwaram Cafe (PTI)
Ten people were injured in the blast at The Rameshwaram Cafe (PTI)

Talking to the media, Parameshwara said, investigators are currently verifying the suspect’s identity and are drawing closer to locating him.

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The blast, caused by an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) at the popular eatery in Brookfield, led to 10 injuries.

The National Investigation Agency (NIA), in collaboration with the Central Crime Branch (CCB) of the Bengaluru police, is leading the investigation.

“Investigations are underway, and we are progressing towards identifying the suspect. Confirmation of the individual’s identity and subsequent apprehension are crucial steps. Both the NIA and CCB are actively pursuing the leads,” Parameshwara informed reporters.

Investigators have pursued leads in Tumakuru, Ballari, and Kalaburagi while tracking down the suspect.

A 10-member NIA team is pursuing the prime suspect in north Karnataka’s Kalaburagi, said officials aware of the matter, who added that the anti-terror unit is scaling up operations to bring in the man who has now been at large for 10 days.

NIA officials on March 8 said the suspect had been spotted in Ballari district, roughly 310km from Bengaluru. A senior officer on Sunday said, the man had then been sighted at a bus stand in Ballari, likely to Kalaburagi, which is a further 300km north.

The officer cited above said, they received information that two unidentified persons were seen interacting with the suspect at the bus stand, adding that a specific Karnataka Road Transport Corporation bus (KRTC) is under the scanner.

Meanwhile, a senior officer in the know of the development said that investigators are a possession of the hair sample that is suspected to be of the bomber. The hat was found at a location away from the blast site, where he had changed his clothes before he escaped the city. Police say that hair samples from the hat could be used to confirm the identity of the suspect.

Days after the blast, Karnataka deputy chief minister DK Shivakumar said, there seems to be a link between the blast at the Rameshwaram Cafe, and the cooker explosion that took place in the coastal city of Mangaluru in 2022.

“There seems to be a link between the Mangaluru incident and this, according to police officers... materials used (for explosions), we can see a similarity, we can see a link, timer and other things,” Shivakumar had said.

The investigators are expected to compare the samples with the family members of some of the absconding members of the gang behind the Mangaluru blast.

Hair strands were used in the past as well to identify the suspects. A strand of hair found on a defused bomb at Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru on April 17, 2010, had helped police establish the identity of a terrorist who planted it.

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    Arun Dev is an Assistant Editor with the Karnataka bureau of Hindustan Times. A journalist for over 10 years, he has written extensively on crime and politics.

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