Powerful blast in Imphal, none hurt; search on to nab perpetrators
Imphal, Dec. 29 (IANS): A powerful Improvised Explosive Device (IED) was detonated in the heart of the Manipur capital, though none was hurt in the explosion as it occurred in the wee hours of Wednesday, police officials said.
The police said that a powerful blast occurred at around 3.40 a.m. near a warehouse at Telipati in Imphal city, damaging the iron shutter of the depot, where potatoes and onions were stored. The wearhouse is owned by Ram Nath Sahu.
The police said that the CCTV camera installed near the blast site captured a youth coming in a two-wheeler and placing a packet there before leaving swiftly.
Senior police officials and the quick response team have launched a search operation to nab the perpetrators.
The security in the Manipur capital and other parts of the state was tightened further recently in view of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to the state on January 4.
Wednesday’s IED blast is the third such detonations in 42 days in the same Imphal East district, though none has been arrested so far in connection these explosions. Also, no militant outfit or any inimical group has claimed responsibility for the blasts yet.
The earlier two incidents on November 18 and December 15 also occurred in the wee hours and none was injured in these explosions, though properties were damaged.
Security forces, including the army and Assam Rifles, are on high alert after the series of incidents, especially after the deadliest terror attack in the region on November 13 in which an Assam Rifles Colonel, his wife and son, and four jawans of the para-military force were gunned down in Churachandpur district bordering Myanmar.
Months ahead of the Assembly elections in Manipur, militant activities have increased in the northeastern state, forcing the authorities to ask the security forces to intensify vigil in the sensitive and vulnerable areas.
Elections to the 60-seat Manipur Assembly are likely to be held in February-March next year, along with Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Goa.