Site of the cylinder blast in Coimbatore
Site of the cylinder blast in Coimbatore

Coimbatore blast probe handed over to NIA

The Tamil Nadu government said the decision to recommend the probe handover to the NIA was taken as there are factors "extraneous to the state" and "possible international links".

The union government on Thursday, October 27, decided to hand over the probe into the cylinder blast case in Coimbatore to the National Intelligence Agency (NIA). The decision came after Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin recommended an investigation by the NIA into the cylinder blast in which Jamesha Mubin, an engineer, was killed. "The Union Home Ministry decided to hand over the Coimbatore blast case to the NIA," an official said. The Tamil Nadu government said the decision to recommend the probe handover to the central anti-terror agency was taken as there is involvement of factors "extraneous to the state" and "possible international links".

On Sunday October 23, a car loaded with two gas cylinders exploded near a temple in Ukkadam, Coimbatore. It was being driven by one Jameesha Mubin, an engineering graduate. Mubin had attempted to get past a police check post near the temple, but fled after failing to do so, state police chief C Sylendra Babu told reporters on Monday, October 24.

The Coimbatore police arrested five people on October 25, who had been in contact with Mubin, and charged them under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. The five of them include Mohammad Thalka (25), Mohammad Asarudheen (25) of Ukkadam; Mohammad Riyaz (27), Feroz Ismail (27) and Mohammad Navaz Ismail (27). One more person was arrested on Thursday, October 27, in connection to the case. Asfar Khan, who was a relative of the deceased Jamesha Mubin was arrested by the Coimbatore police. The police said that they had recovered around 75 kg of materials including potassium nitrate, aluminium powder, charcoal and sulphur used in making explosives, from Mubin’s house. Reports said that the police suspect these materials were bought from e-commerce websites like Amazon and Flipkart.

Mubin was under the NIA radar in 2019 in the aftermath of the Easter bomb blasts in Sri Lanka, but no case was filed against him, police said.

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