Bengaluru, Mar 3: Was the attack on the Israeli visa centre at Bengaluru a terror strike? On November 29 2015 there was a fire at the Israeli visa centre in Bengaluru.
The local police had dismissed it as a minor incident and even said it was a result of personal rivalry between the owners of the building.
However the NIA is attempting to draw a link between this attack and the Church Street blasts.
The NIA feels that it could be the same man Alam Jeb Afridi behind both the attacks. Afridi was recently arrested in Bengaluru on the allegation that he was part of an ISIS module.
He was taken to Hyderabad as he was a wanted accused over there. Out there the police claimed that he had confessed to planting the bomb at Church Street in Bengaluru. The NIA which questioned him too confirmed his role in the attack.
The Israeli link:
NIA officials say that they are only drawing out similarities since the CCTV footage shows the same man at both the places.
Further it is also stated that he had a hatred towards Jews and hence may have wanted to target the centre.
If one may recall during the investigation into the Church Street blasts case it was being stated that the bomb was planted with an intention of killing an Israeli delegation which was to have dinner at the restaurant where the bomb had been planted.
However there was a strong denial from the Israeli mission in India. In an official communication the mission had said that no delegation was scheduled to visit the restaurant that night.
On the attack on the visa centre, the Bengaluru police say that it was not a terror attack. While probing the case, it had found that it was a civil dispute which had led to the arson. In this incident someone had hurled a kerosene bomb at the centre thus setting off a fire.
The other point of dispute is that Afridi had planned on planting the bomb at a restaurant on Church Street as he was aware of a visit by an Israel delegation. He wanted to time the bomb with their visit, the NIA had stated. However both the Israel mission in Bengaluru and the police have denied any such knowledge.