The Rajkot Rural police on Saturday arrested a 68-year-old man Rajkot city and claimed to have cracked the case of a parcel bomb that was sent to a principal of a private school in Upleta town, a week ago. Police also claimed that the arrest of the accused also helped them to crack a 19-year-old murder case in which two persons were killed through a parcel bomb in Upleta town in 1999.
Police said that Natha Dobariya, a farmer from Upleta town, had sent the bomb through a courier with an intent to kill Vallabh Dobariya, the principal of Krishan Shaikshanik Sankul, to settle a 12-year-old property dispute.
“To hide his identity, Natha Dobariya had sent the parcel containing the bomb from Amreli with a letter addressed to the principal. In the letter, the accused stated that he was a former student of the school and that he was sending the gift as a token of gratitude to the principal. The courier was delivered at the school on October 12. However, when Vallabh Dobariya partially opened the parcel, on October 16, he noticed something like a switch and wire and suspecting something wrong, alerted the police. Natha Dobariya had assembled the bomb by using gelatine sticks, a detonator, some wires and circuits and a pressure releasing mechanism to trigger the blast. The device was designed to go off when the parcel would be opened,” said Balram Meena, Superintendent of Police (Rajkot Rural), on Saturday.
According to the police, Vallabh Dobariya had purchased a costly house from Natha Dobariya in Upleta town in 2006. “However, a dispute arose between the two parties over payment against the sale of the property. The matter had reached the court and it is still pending. Not only that, Natha Dobariya claims that Vallabh Dobariya had publicly insulted him during a marriage ceremony in 2008. After repeated attempts to settle the dispute out of court went in vain, a frustrated Natha Dobariya thought of eliminating Vallabh Dobariya,” Meena said.
The SP said that being a farmer, Natha Dobariya, who currently lives in Rajkot city, knew how to handle gelatine sticks and detonators as they are commonly used in blasting farm wells.
Meena said that the arrest of Natha Dobariya also helped the police crack a 1999 bomb blast case in Upleta town. “In 1999, Girish Sojitra and Ratilal Padariya, both residents of Upleta, were killed when they opened a gift parcel sent to them at Upleta town. While being questioned in connection with the parcel bomb delivered to the school principal, Natha Dobariya confessed that he was also behind the 1999 blast. He said that he had killed the duo over a land dispute,” the SP added.
According to the police, Natha Dobariya used to spend time at an electric repair shop of his maternal uncle in Upleta town around 20 years ago where had picked up the knowledge of wiring etc.