Coimbatore Police on Tuesday, 25 October, invoked sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) in the recent car blast case, following the recovery of over 75 kg of explosive raw materials from the residence of 25-year-old Jameza Mubin, an accused who died in the blast.
This means that the National Investigation Agency (NIA) can take over the probe from the state police in Tamil Nadu as the UAPA is a scheduled offence under the NIA Act, 2008, NDTV reported.
Mubin had reportedly been questioned by the NIA in 2019 over alleged links to ISIS.
The gas cylinder blast which took place from inside a car near a temple in Coimbatore on Sunday, 23 October, was being investigated by the state police for potential terror links. Search operations over the last two days reportedly led to huge quantities of explosives being found at the house of the accused.
Police seized "low-intensive explosive material" used for making country bombs such as potassium nitrate, aluminium powder, charcoal, and sulphur, as per the report.
What Exactly Happened?
Mubin, an engineering graduate from Ukkadam, was driving a hatchback car with two LPG cylinders in the back. The police said that one of the cylinders exploded in front of Kottai Easwaran Kovil near Town Hall at around 4 am on Sunday, The Hindu reported.
The other 35 kg commercial cylinder was reportedly found intact at the blast site by the police. Besides the two cylinders, other items including nails and marbles were also reportedly in the car that exploded.
Shortly after the blast, a resident alerted the Fire and Rescue Services who reached the site and doused the flames. The remains were recovered from the site and shifted to the Coimbatore Medical College Hospital, as per report.
It is unclear if the blast was a planned attack that went haywire. "Going by the materials seized from his house, this [materials in the car] could have been meant for a possible plan in the future," Director General of Police C Sylendra Babu was quoted as saying by The Hindu.
(With inputs from NDTV and The Hindu.)