Kerala blast: Kochi resident claims responsibility, surrenders to police

The incident, which resulted in one fatality and 40 injuries, aimed to create terror during a prayer gathering of Jehovah's Witness Believers

About 2,000 people were gathered for prayers at the convention centre at the time of the blast (photo: IANS)
About 2,000 people were gathered for prayers at the convention centre at the time of the blast (photo: IANS)


In a major development, a person from Kochi has surrendered before Kerala Police claiming responsibility for the bomb blasts at a convention centre in Kalamassery on Sunday, sources confirmed.

According to sources, the person claiming responsibility for the blasts had surrendered at Thrissur police station. The accused had claimed that he had planted the bomb which resulted in the death of a woman and left 40 people injured. Seven of them are in critical condition.

The police are investigating the incident. Sources said the man came in on his own and surrendered before the police. More details are yet to emerge regarding the development.

Meanwhile, Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan has called for an all-party meeting in state capital Thiruvananthapuram on Monday to discuss the development.

The investigation into the multiple bomb blasts in Kerala's Kalamassery Convention Centre on Sunday 29 October, has revealed that an improvised explosive device (IED) kept in a tiffin box was used to trigger the explosion, said sources.

One person was killed and 40 were injured in the blasts. Among the injured, the condition of seven persons was critical.

Sources have also confirmed that it was an act intended to create terror. About 2,000 people were gathered for prayers at the convention centre at the time of the blast. 

A four-member team from the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) from Kochi was at the spot. Sources confirmed that the NIA team from New Delhi had left for Kerala to take over the investigation. 

According to police, multiple explosions were reported from the spot where the meeting of Jehovah's Witness Believers was held. The blasts had occurred at around 9.00 am. The hall was sealed and Kerala Police's anti-terror squad was at the site.

Jehovah's Witnesses are a group of Christians who do not identify themselves as Protestants. The Jehovah's Witness Convention is an annual gathering where large assemblies called regional conventions are held for three days. The event had started last Friday and it was supposed to end on Sunday, according to sources.

All injured have been shifted to the Government Medical College Hospital in Kalamassery, sources said. 

CM Vijayan described the incident as "very unfortunate". All aspects will be deeply probed, he underlined. The chief minister, who is in Delhi attending his party meeting, has deputed state cooperation minister VN Vasavan.

Vasavan reached the site and told the media that it was a very unfortunate incident and details of the blast were not ascertained as yet. CPI (M) state secretary MV Govindan says the terror angle should be looked into in connection with the bomb blast incident.

The police sources said the deceased was a woman and her identity was yet to be ascertained.

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