To pay tribute to the victims of the German Bakery blasts, 10 years after the incident which killed 17 and left over 60 injured, schoolchildren and residents lit candles at the outlet which had been hit, in Pune on Thursday.
Two tribute ceremonies were held to mark the occasion — one at 11.30 am and the other at 7.15 pm, the time when the blast occurred in February 2010.
Kunal Udane, owner of German Bakery, said that after the incident, the main aim was to restore the cafe’s original atmosphere. “We renovated the entire space so that people do not associate the place with fear… We have made sure that when it comes to security, no stone is left unturned. We carry out a full verification for employees and also coordinate with police. We also have several foreigners who visit, so we have a responsibility to maintain a high level of security.”
“We have a group among ourselves, which we use to coordinate with employees at other outlets in the city. We inform them if changes are made at any of these places so that everybody stays informed. For security purposes, we too stay alert, apart from the security at the entrance. We also have random checks twice a week and a thorough check is done ahead of special days or events,” said cafe manager Tukaram Bhekane.
Aruna Khopde, a security personnel at the German Bakery outlet in Koregaon Park, said that since the blast, security in the area has increased and everyone stays vigilant.
“I have been working here for the last three years. We are asked to frisk every individual who comes in and we check every bag. The people who come know about the incident and hence cooperate with us. It is a small but necessary measure to ensure that nothing like this happens again,” said Khopde.
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