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Pune blast looks like terror strike, Maharashtra tells Centre

Pune blast looks like terror strike, Maharashtra tells Centre

The Maharashtra police has informed the Centre that Thursday's Pune bomb blast was not meant to inflict serious casualties but was possibly an attempt by some terror outfit to mark its presence. The state police's acknowledgement that it was a terror attack comes a day after Union home secretary Anil Goswami wondered why a minor blast should, by default, be treated as an act of terror. 

pune blast

In its report on the Pune blast sent to the home ministry, the Maharashtra police said placement of the explosive on the motorcycle established that the bomber did not intend to inflict serious casualties. "It was possibly an attempt to register the presence of some terrorist organization," the report claimed without elaborating on the identity of the terror outfit.

Five people were injured in the low-intensity blast at Pune's Dagdusheth Halwai Ganapati temple. The bomb was placed on a stolen motorcycle in the parking area of a police station nearby. 

A preliminary examination of the IED used in the blast showed that it comprised a nine-volt Duracell battery, electric detonator and explosives that prime facie seems to be ammonium nitrate. The IED contained no more than 300 grams of the explosive, the Maharashtra police report said. 

The bomb had a digital timer and was wrapped in a plastic bag. It was packed with ball bearings that would serve as shrapnel.
Though the Central and state security agencies are not hazarding a guess yet on the identity of the outfit responsible for the blast, the modus operandi and make of the bomb point the needle of suspicion towards Indian Mujahideen.

Though the arrest of IM bigwigs like Yasin Bhatkal, Asadullah Akhtar, Tehseen Akhtar, Waqas and Haider over the last few months have been debilitating for the outfit associated with most terror attacks since 2008, the agencies suspect that some remnant modules may still be at work. 

Pune had witnessed serial blasts in February 2010, which killed 17 people, and was targeted yet again in August 2012, which left one person injured. Both the blasts were blamed on the IM.



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