Bodh Gaya blasts: Four released; Rs 10 lakh bounty for info on bombers

With the investigations into the Bodh Gaya serials blasts case probe failing to make much headway, the NIA on Wednesday announced a reward of Rs10 lakhs for anybody providing information regarding the bombers.

Updated: Jul 10, 2013, 23:44 PM IST

Zee Media Bureau

Bodh Gaya/Patna: With the investigations into the Bodh Gaya serials blasts case probe failing to make much headway, the National Investigating Agency (NIA) on Wednesday announced a reward of Rs 10 lakh for anybody providing information regarding the bombers.

Investigators are looking into all possible angles, including any Naxal role, and also the purported claim by banned terror outfit Indian Mujahideen (IM).

The Bihar Police, meanwhile, released on Wednesday four persons, including one woman, detained on Tuesday in connection with the explosions on Sunday in and around Buddhism`s holiest shrine as no evidence was found against them.

No arrests have been made in the case but police detained one more person identified as Dasrath, who belonged to Barachhati village from where Binod Mistri.

Dasrath was picked up on the basis of calls he made to Mistri and as his named figured in the police diary, police sources said. The role of Mistri and Dasrath in the attack, if any, has not been ascertained yet.

Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, who visited the bomb blast sites along with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Congress leader Ambika Soni, said a "detailed" probe was being carried out by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

Asked about any involvement of Naxals in the Gaya blasts, he said, "There are so many complex problems. Infiltration from other countries is there, naxalites are there, local communal disturbances are there. We have to see all angles."

Shinde said the NIA, which has taken over the probe, is looking into all possible angles including the purported claim by IM in a Twitter account about carrying out the blasts and any possible link with the issue of alleged atrocities on the Rohangiya Muslims in Myanmar.

"We are conducting complete investigations. Three-four people may be involved...With a car. We are conducting detailed investigations," he said.

Asked why no arrests have been made in the case, he said, "Arresting anyone in a hurry is not right. Investigations should go into detail and catch hold of the real culprits."

The Home Minister maintained that there was no delay in sending the NIA teams to the blast site.

"We sent the teams by air but due to thunderstorms and bad weather in between, the flight had to turn back and they reached the site at 4 pm," he said.

According to the Home Minister, of the 13 bombs placed at the site on Sunday morning, 10 went off between 5 am and 6 am.

"It seems small gas cylinders weighing two to three kg were used, and they contained nails and ball bearings. Initial investigation shows that the bombs were placed in the night and three or four people could be involved," he said.

The "centre would look into" Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar`s request to deploy Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) at the temple, said Shinde.

Senior Superintendent of Police Manu Maharaj told a news agency in Patna that the four people who were detained were released after no evidence of links with the explosions was found during their questioning. Two monks were injured in the blasts.

The four had themselves volunteered to meet Patna City Superintendent of Police Jaykant after coming to know they had figured in the CCTV footage at the blast site at the temple complex.

During questioning, the four said they had gone to Bodh Gaya to visit the historic Mahabodhi temple, Jaykant said. Besides the Bihar police, they were also questioned by NIA and IB.

Three FIRs were also lodged against unknown people at the Bodh Gaya police station on the basis of statements of security personnel on duty at the temple on the day of the explosions, Senior Superintendent of Police, Gaya, Ganesh Kumar said.

(With PTI inputs)