Phailin saved Ranchi from serial blasts

    By IANS,

    Ranchi : The cyclone Phailin proved to be a boon for the Jharkhand state capital as it helped avert serial blasts during the Durga Puja festival, police sources said Sunday.

    The National Investigation Agency (NIA) and Ranchi police recovered nine bombs fitted with timers from the Iram lodge in Hindpiri area of Ranchi Nov 4. Police also recovered 25 gelatin sticks, 14 detonators and 12 timers.

    “The bombs were ready for use after a battery was added to them. Some of them could have been used during the Durga Puja festival,” an official of the state special branch told IANS.

    “However, due to the cyclone Phailin, Ranchi witnessed incessant rainfall during Durga Puja. During the days of the puja, people visit several pandals. A major tragedy could have taken place in Ranchi,” he said.

    The nine bombs were recovered from a room of the lodge, which was raided after the Oct 27 Patna serial blasts, in which six people were killed and nearly 100 injured.

    A man named Mujibul, a resident of Ormanjhi area of Ranchi, was staying on rent in the room. He is now untraceable and on the run.

    Police said the Patna blasts were planned in Ranchi. The blasts took place ahead of a rally of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.

    Imtiyaz and Uzair, two of those arrested in the Patna blasts, hail from Ranchi. The NIA is searching for at least four more youths of Ranchi in connection with the blasts.

    A police official, however, lamented that authorities in Ranchi were not equipped to deal with terror activities.

    A proposal to set up an anti-terrorist cell is pending with the state government for the last two years.

    “We do not have adequate resources to deal with terrorist activities. We do not know much about the terrorists operative module. Some youths of Ranchi have been arrested in the past but such arrests did make us feel that terror attacks could take place in Ranchi or any other place in the state,” the police official said.

    Ranchi first witnessed a terror attack in 2008 when a bomb was found in a popular shopping mall. Police at that time saw the incident as a move by anti-social elements to create panic.

    “The 2008 incident is now being seen as a training of the youths associated with the Indian Mujaheeddin,” the police official said.

    Officials say Jharkhand is gradually turning into a place of hiding and operations of the terror outfit.

    Police admit that the Indian Mujaheeddin often pick youths for terror activities from Ranchi, Jamshedpur, Hazaribagh, Jamtara and a few other places in the state.