9 injured in Bengaluru blast

A bomb blast at a popular eatery in the city today left nine persons injured and police have launched a probe from all angles after it emerged that an earlier suspected gas leak was not the cause of the explosion.
Police suspect that a bag at the eatery with a possible Improvised Explosive Device (IED) could have exploded, even as the NIA and the IB have been apprised of the matter. Officials from the local unit of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) later arrived at the spot.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said investigation is on to ascertain the cause and nature of the explosion at the popular Rameshwaram Cafe in Whitefiled, and added it might have been caused by an “improvised explosive” device.
The incident should not be politicised and everyone should cooperate, Siddaramaiah said, adding strict action would be taken against those involved.
State Police chief Alok Mohan described the explosion as a “bomb blast” and said nobody was seriously injured.
“At 1 PM, a bomb blast occurred at the hotel (cafe), nine people are injured, and no one is serious. We are investigating. FSL (forensic) teams have come and are checking. City police Commissioner and other officers are at the spot. We will certainly identify who did it,” he said after visiting the spot.
Speaking to reporters, he said the injured — both staff and customers — are undergoing treatment.
Asked whether an IED was used for the blast, he said, “we are checking.”
“Let’s not say anything now itself. The FSL team has come and they are checking. Once they collect (samples from the spot), we will examine.”
Divya Raghavendra Rao, Co-Founder & Managing Director of Rameshwaram Cafe told a Kannada news channel the blast occurred in the area where customers wash their hands. A stand is also kept there, where the waste is collected.
The explosion was caused from a bag placed by someone from outside, she claimed. A CCTV video of the incident showed an explosion, leading to smoke and panic-stricken customers and others fleeing the place.
While it was initially suspected that a gas leak could have triggered the blast, the Fire department ruled out the possibility and said a bag was found at the spot.
Subsequently, police were looking into all angles related to the incident.
A Bomb Disposal Squad and forensic teams were at the spot.
CCTV footage is being scanned to check if there was any suspicious movement in and around the cafe.
“At 1.08 pm today, the Fire department received a call about LPG leakage fire in the cafe. When our officers and teams reached the spot, there was no fire or flame. A bag which was lying behind a woman who was sitting with six other customers at the eatery exploded. It is suspected that the explosion could have been caused due to some object in that bag,” TN Shivashankar, Director of Karnataka State Fire and Emergency Services department said.
It is not clear whose bag it was. (PTI)