Bengaluru, Jan 28: Investigating officials in India have the tendency of fixating on terror groups and are very quick to blame an outfit when an attack takes place. Dossiers on terror groups are pulled out, to satisfy the inquisitiveness of frothing journalists, more sound bytes are given out and in the bargain the biggest point is always missed out- who was the bomber?
The investigations into the Church Street blasts at Bengaluru appears to have hit a road block and it again appears to be a classic case as we at OneIndia (Bengaluru blast-Chasing an outfit, not the bomber) had reported, "chase the bomber first and not the outfit."
On December 27th 2014 at around 8.30 pm a bomb exploded at Church Street Bengaluru claiming the life of an innocent mother.
The police was quick in its reaction. All senior officers were quick to reach the spot and ensured that area was cordoned off and sanitized.
All samples and evidence were gathered and sent for forensic testing. On this count, hats off to the police for ensuring that the crowd stayed away from the crime scene and evidence was saved.
The problem began here:
Let us blame both the police and the media here. The media asks and the cops answer. The first line of thinking in everyone's mind was who could have carried out the blast. Was it the Indian Mujahideen, the SIMI or the Al-Ummah.
These names were cropping up on the basis of pattern and intent. However, in today's terrorism there is nothing called pattern as groups tend to ape each other in pattern only with a view of confusing an investigator.
A team rushed to Tamil Nadu to check on the Al-Ummah, which was behind the Malleshwaram blast of 2013. Another team was in coordination with the Madhya Pradesh police who have been tracking five SIMI members since time immemorial.
How can we forget Mehdi Masroor here? The youth running an ISIS sympathetic handle called @shammiwitness had just been arrested. There were messages that threatened to carry out an attack in retaliation of his arrest. This led a large chunk of the media to blindly blame Masroor for the attack.
What they missed out on?
Bomb making is no rocket science these days. A step by step guide is available on the internet. Moreover, this is the era of outsourced terrorism or lone wolf terror.
Call it cost cutting or undertaking an easy job, groups such as the Al-Qaeda have called for more lone wolf attacks. Such attacks dodge investigators since there is no surveillance on a lone wolf as he is a first timer.
The investigators completely missed this point and did not bother to look at who the bomber could have been. Instead they chased up an outfit finding the motive.
No profiling done:
Without fixating on the US, the Indian police must take a cue out of their investigations into the case of the New York bomber. He was a lone wolf who worked all by himself and had no affiliation to an outfit.
If a lone wolf subscribes to the thought of a terror outfit, it is important in investigations, but that ought to come at a much later stage. In the New York case, the CCTV footage played a vital role and the cops first profiled the bomber.
Profiling a bomber would ideally give out the identity of the man and then the next task of hunting him down begins. Once the man is apprehended then the rest of the questions pertaining to outfit, motive and school of thought can come up.
100 men and chasing none:
The Bengaluru police have utilized the services of at least 100 personnel to crack the case. All of them have visited several places in the country and have come back with nothing.
One would wonder what exactly these 100 personnel were chasing in the first place. The probe starts off with the police saying the CCTV footage has not given out the best images.
Without a proper image in mind, the question is who are they chasing?
The cops did prepare sketches. However they were not confident enough to make it public as they felt that the wrong man could be targeted.
Speaking of sketches, it is a good thing that the police decided not to make the same public. One of the men in the sketch turned out to be a drunkard who was moving around the site on the day of the blast.