In a major development, the Home Ministry has transferred, the Kochi serial blast case to the National Investigation Agency. With that development, an anti-terror agency will probe the blast case in which one person was killed and 56 others were injured. A team from the National Security Guard is also on its way to Kerala
At least three blasts took place just minutes after a prayer meeting of Jehovah's Witnesses began at a Kochi convention centre. There were 2,000 people at the convention centre when the blasts took place - the first one at 9.47 a.m. - according to officials. Sunday was the last day of the three-day meeting, which started on October 27.
As per the Kerala police, the Improvised Explosive Device was used in the attack and the explosives were kept in a tiffin box. There were reports that an IED kept inside a tiffin box caused the blast. Sources also said that police have found CCTV visuals of a car speeding out of the centre just before the blast. The probe team suspect the person who planted the IED might have been driving the car.
Police have sealed the hall where the blast took place on Sunday morning. Detailed inspection by the forensic team, fingerprint experts, fire force and the bomb squad is currently in progress. Police have taken complete control of the convention centre following the blast. The district authority has arranged vehicles to transport participants to the prayer meeting. The police asked them to leave the spot immediately and told them that their belongings inside the hall would be safe.
The National Security Guard (NSG) has rushed one of its bomb disposal units from Delhi to Kerala to collect and inquire about the materials used in the explosion that occurred during a prayer meeting in the state on Sunday leaving one killed and several injured.
According to sources, an eight-member National Security Guard team, including an officer, is on its way to Kerala to inquire about the bomb explosion. The team is expected to reach the bomb blast site by this evening.
It should be noted that the blast comes just days after Khaled Mashal, the former leader of the Hamas militant group, instigated people against the Hindus and Judaism. He virtually addressed a ‘solidarity event’ organised by the Solidarity Youth Movement at 4:30 p.m. on 27 October.
In his speech, Khalid asked people present at the rally to extend unconditional support to Hamas and made anti-Hindu comments. Anti-Hindu slogans were raised in the rally held in Malappuram, and the audience is heard applauding the address of Khaled Mashal playing on a large screen. They supported his call and vowed to support Hamas terrorists.