Bengaluru Churchstreet blast: NIA begins probe in a blind case

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Bengaluru, May 21: Will the Bengaluru Churchstreet blasts case be cracked or not. The National Investigation Agency had yesterday registered an FIR in the case indicating a formal take over of the probe, but for now it is a blind case.

Although the Bengaluru police probed the matter for nearly four months, there is not one worthwhile evidence that came its way. This ideally would mean that the NIA has to start afresh and the reliance will be heavy on circumstantial evidence.


Who did it is the first step?

There is no material on hand which would lead to the perpetrators of the crime. There were various names of terror groups that cropped up at the start of the probe which commenced in the month of December 2014. The Bengaluru police looked at a possible SIMI link and then focused on another group called the Al-Ummah.

The police even brought down two arrested SIMI operatives from Bihar and questioned them, but none of this yielded any result. The police then sent a team to Tamil Nadu to find out if the Al-Ummah which had carried out the blast outside the BJP office in Malleshwaram in Bengaluru two years back was behind it. However this too turned out to be a wasted exercise. Till date there is a question that lingers on and that is who did it?

Tough task ahead for the NIA

NIA officials tell Oneindia that at the moment they are looking at a blind case. There are only theories available for now, but not a single scratch of evidence which could lead to a concrete conclusion. The problem is at the roots and that is the non-availability of CCTV footage.

Moreover whoever carried out the blast has not left behind a single trail of evidence that could give us any concrete leads. This is going to take some time and we cannot view this case as an independent one. We have conducted investigations in the Chennai train and Bijor, UP blasts.

We need to see if the Churchstreet blast is interlinked or not. We need to start from scratch and at the moment would need to rely on circumstantial evidence and also theory to make a start, the NIA official also informed.

Was it the famous five?

Five persons had escaped from a jail in Khandwa one and half years back. These were all SIMI operatives and they had been blamed for a series of incidents which included a blast in Bijor and Chennai and also a spate of robberies in Madhya Pradesh and Telangana.

However recently two of these persons had been killed in an encounter by the police in Telangana. The other three continue to be on the run and there are some intercepts to suggest that they could have slipped out of the country through Uttar Pradesh.

This yet again is a possibility, but cannot be considered as concrete evidence, the NIA official adds. We will explore this angle as well. We are certain that they had played a role in the Chennai train blast, but it is too early to say that they are involved in the Churchstreet blast too, the officer further informed.

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