Design flaw reduced impact of the Pune blast, experts claim

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Pune bomb blast
Pune/New Delhi, Aug 3: With Indian intelligence officials still grappling to find clues on the serial low intensity blasts in Pune late Wednesday night, reports have merged citing that the minor blasts could have been part of a much bigger terror plot. The Home ministry and the Pune police commissioner had earlier ruled out a terror angle and claimed to be the handiwork of some mischief makers.

Security agencies have now claimed that the impact of the blast could have been much bigger and was considerably lessened if not for a design flaw in the bomb placed in five separate places in Junglee Maharaj road in Pune. The flaw prevented the shrapnel from spreading thereby lessening the damage and casualties.

The investigative officials came to this conclusion after studying the two unexploded IEDs that were recovered from the area. Sources have been quoted as saying that the terrorists could not achieve what they set out to do and that a design flaw could have hampered the terrorists' plans. The fact that moisture in the area due to the rains could have been the blessing in disguise leading to reduced intensity of the blasts.

Forensic analysis claimed that ammonium nitrate was used in the bombs and that wrist watches were used to trigger the blast. The black sticky substance used in the detonated bomb has been sent to experts to further understand the ingredients of the bomb.

Maharashtra Home Minister RR Patil has been quoted as saying, "According to preliminary reports, ammonium nitrate was the primary ingredient used in the devices which were apparently triggered by electronic triggers. We are awaiting a detailed forensic report on this."

The letter received by the Pune police after the death of Indian Mujahiddeen operative Qateel Siddiqui in Yerawada Central Jail on Jun 7 is also being looked into closely for possible clues. Qateel was strangled to death inside his jail cell. The letter, written in Marathi, was sent to Pune police commissioner’s office a few days after the terrorist was killed.

The nature of the blasts and materials used point out to the involvement of the Indian Mujahideen (IM) in the blasts. As per official sources, the use of a timer to trigger the battery-operated detonators that were placed in plastic bags and three brand new bicycles and dustbins, have a clear stamp of IM.

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