Updated March 1st, 2024 at 21:18 IST

National Security at Stake? Congress Downplays Blast at Bengaluru's Most Famous Cafe

Rameshwaram Cafe Blast: The Congress party has referred to the explosion as an IED blast, stopping short of referring to it as a terror incident.

Reported by: Digital Desk
Rameshwaram Cafe Blast | Image:PTI
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New Delhi: Despite clear CCTV footage showing a man placing a bag inside the famous Rameshwaram cafe, the ruling Congress party in Karnataka has refrained from categorising the incident as a terrorist attack. Instead, the party has referred to the explosion as an IED blast, stopping short of referring to it as a terror incident. This decision has sparked controversy and raised questions over the party's stance on terror-related matters. 

“There's information that around 12.30 pm, there was an explosion. And that there was a bag. The investigation is on... I am getting to know that it was an IED. The investigation is on”, CM Siddaramaiah said while speaking to reporters after the blast at the famous Bengaluru eatery which left 9 people injured. 

‘Low-Intensity Blast’ 

Echoing similar remarks, Karnataka Deputy CM DK Shivakumar said,“It was a low-intensity blast. A youth came and kept a small bag which exploded after an hour. About 10 people received injuries. 7-8 teams formed to probe the incident. We are looking at all angles. I ask every Banglorean to not worry”. 

BJP Demands Detailed Probe

Meanwhile, Karnataka BJP President BY Vijayendra said the government's ‘callousness’ and the failure of police intelligence is evident in this incident. The BJP state chief accused the government of downplaying such crimes and said it "is pushing the state into this chaos, making it a safe haven for antisocial elements. 

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"Deeply troubled to hear about the blast at Rameswaram Cafe in Bangalore. Praying for a swift recovery of all the injured in the incident. State govt should order a detailed enquiry and spare no efforts in apprehending the perpetrators," Vijayendra posted on social media platform X. Vijayendra said the failure of police intelligence is also evident in this incident. "We strongly urge the police to conduct a thorough probe and eradicate these elements from the core without yielding to any political pressures," he added.

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Leader of Opposition in the Assembly and BJP leader R Ashoka claimed that the bomb blast at Rameshwaram Cafe was yet another glaring example of the "deteriorating law and order situation" in Karnataka ever since the Chief Minister Siddaramaiah-led Congress government came to power in the state. "Wherever the Congress comes to power, the terrorists and anti-national elements feel emboldened because of its policy of unabashed and unbridled appeasement," he alleged.

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"The Congress government should first ensure 'guarantee' of safety and security to the people of Karnataka," he said, taking a dig at the government's 'poll guarantees' of welfare schemes. 

Bangalore South MP Tejasvi Surya asked Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to give a free hand to the police and investigating agencies to conduct the probe and give clear answers to people of Bengaluru about the incident. "At first, they tried the narrative of cylinder blast. Now, they are trying the narrative of business rivalry. Why can’t the Congress government allow the investigation agencies to do their job? Why preempt? Why prompt? Vote Bank compulsions?" he posted on X.   

Rameshwaram Cafe Blast

At around 1 PM, a bomb blast at Rameshwaram cafe in Bengaluru left nine persons injured. Police suspect that a bag at the eatery with a possible improvised explosive device (IED) could have exploded. According to reports, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) will visit the Bengaluru explosion site as per Standard Operating Procedure (SOP).

Republic TV has also accessed CCTV footage of the IED blast. The disturbing video showed customers eagerly waiting for a table while a waiter prepared to serve. Suddenly panic gripped the area as the explosion ripped through a portion of the cafe. The footage also showed a woman lying on the floor, while several other people running for their lives.

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In another CCTV footage, an unidentified person can be seen keeping a bag inside the cafe. Meanwhile, Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said investigations are on to ascertain the cause and nature of the explosion at Rameshwaram Cafe in Bengaluru and added that it might have been caused by an improvised explosive device (IED). 

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Published March 1st, 2024 at 21:08 IST