Ex-Army Man Nabbed for Hoax Call on Terror Strike ‘Had A Vision’

65-year-old Swamy Sundara Murthy has been arrested for making a hoax call about a terror threat.

Updated
India
3 min read

Sixty-five-year-old Swamy Sundara Murthy has been arrested by Bengaluru police for making a hoax call about a terror threat, that sent cops in three states on a wild goose chase.

The arrested person had been identified as a resident of Munivenkatappa Layout, Avalahalli. He is a retired army person, now working as a truck driver.

Karnataka DG-IGP had written to his counterparts of six states and an Union Territory –Tami Nadu, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Puducherry, Goa, Maharashtra –warning of terror attacks.

During interrogation by Central Crime Branch, he said he had a vision about the terror attack. Further interrogation of the suspect is underway.
The letter from Karnataka DG-IGP.
The letter from Karnataka DG-IGP.
(Photo Courtesy: Acquired by The Quint)
The man claimed, according to the letter, that these attacks would take place in trains. The letter also said that the man claimed to have information that there were 19 terrorists present in Tamil Nadu’s Ramanathapuram. After this information was given to the Tamilnadu police official, even the Tamil Nadu’s Principal Secretary had issued an alert to its state police.
Tamil Nadu’s Principal Secretary’s alert.
Tamil Nadu’s Principal Secretary’s alert.
(Photo Courtesy: Acquired by The Quint)

Suspect Claims He is Slain Kargil Soldier’s Father

Murthy, who sent police officers of three states into a tizzy, was a driver in the army. He served for eight years before retiring in 1992. According to KV Sharath Chandra, Inspector General (IG), central range, the man claimed he had lost one of his sons during the Kargil war and another son is still serving in the army. The police said they are verifying the claims made by him.

How He Was Nabbed

The operation was carried out by officers of Central Crime Branch (CCB), Bengaluru rural and Kolar district. Soon after control room, received the call, alerts were issued by Karnataka DGP. At the same time, a team of CCB was asked to track down the origin of the call, and it was traced to Avalahalli in the outskirts of Bengaluru city.

While a team of the CCB was dispatched to the location, officers of Bengaluru rural range were asked to recce the area, where his call was traced. As it was suspected that he was shifting base, officers of neighbouring Kolar districts too, were asked to track him.

During this time, he turned off his cell phone.

Soon, cops pulled out the details of the call records and they found he had made several calls to one number. It was later found that the number belonged to the owner of the truck Murthy was driving. He gave the cops a location, where he used to park the vehicle and around 8am, he was taken into custody.

A Repeat Offender

Alok Kumar, additional commissioner of police (CCB) said in the investigation that followed, they came across evidence that Murthy had made such hoax calls in the past as well. “We suspect he was behind a similar call that was made to Chennai police from Ramanathapuram, few months ago. We are currently looking into the matter,” he said.

Bomb Threat to Pamban Bridge

Meanwhile, police said that they received an anonymous phone call threatening to blast the Pamban sea bridge, which connects Rameshwaram to the mainland, prompting police to carry out extensive searches on Friday.

Following this, police, along with sniffer dogs and bomb detection squad personnel, mounted a search on both the road and rail bridges connecting Pamban and Rameswaram, they said.

Vehicles plying on the road bridge were being checked, police said.

The threat comes at a time when security to the famous Lord Ramanathaswamy temple in Rameswaram has been heightened, following the serial bomb blasts in Sri Lanka, which left 253 people dead and injured 500 others.

The Coast Guard, Coastal Marine Police and the local police have been asked to be vigilant round-the-clock as there was a possibility of some terrorists involved in Sri Lanka's worst terror attack entering India through the sea route, police have said.

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