The Kamatapur Liberation Organisation (KLO),suspected to be behind last night’s Jalpaiguri blast which left five persons dead and nine injured,denied its involvement and alleged that the West Bengal Police was trying to malign the organisation.
“We clarify that the WB Police has been trying to mislead Kamatapuri people by blaming us… They have been trying to defame our organisation,” KLO general secretary Kailash Koch said in a statement.
“So,we warn the WB Police not to play hide and seek with innocent people using the name of our organisation,” the statement said.
The explosion is believed to have been the handiwork of the KLO which observed martyrs’ day yesterday coinciding with the blast.
Reacting on the KLO’s denial,IG (law and order) Anuj Sharma,said,”We neither claimed that KLO was involved nor gave them a clean chit. The investigation is on and it will bring out the truth.”
Meanwhile,an abandoned bag near a level crossing in the Jalpaiguri town sparked off panic among the residents. Senior district police officers said the bag was found lying unclaimed in an alley close to the level crossing gate number three in the town this evening.
Local residents informed the police soon and the area was cordoned off,officers at the Kotwali Police Station said,adding,the bomb squad had been alerted.
A senior Jalpaiguri police officer said,”Since last evening’s blast,all police stations in the district,specially along the border have been put on high alert. We are waiting for the bomb squad to come and look into the abandoned bag,” a senior officer said.
Meanwhile,state North Bengal Development minister Gautam Deb and state panchayat minister Subrata Mukherjee on Friday visited the blast site and met the family members of the victims. They also held a meeting with senior district police and administrative officials at the Circuit House here.
Later talking to reporters,Mukherjee said,”Some persons have already been arrested in connection,but we are not giving any further details due to security reasons and for the sake of the investigation.
“The state government has decided to pay a compensation of Rs 2 lakh to the next to kin of the dead,Rs 1 lakh to persons who had sustained grievous injuries and Rs 50,000 to those who have sustained minor injuries.
The injured will be treated free of cost at the hospital. We are not blaming anyone at this moment. The administration and the police are on high alert and we will combat the challenge,” he said.
Earlier in the day,CPI-M Central Committee member Md Selim and other district leaders visited the blast site and met family members of the victims. They also went to Jalpaiguri hospital and enquired about the treatment of the injured.
“We should not try to find a political angle to such a heinous crime. We are not here trying to oppose anything. Innocent people have lost their lives in the blast and we strongly condemn it. We want that proper investigation take place and the guilty bepunished,” Selim told reporters. Senior Congress leader Manas Bhuiyan also visited the blast site and the injured in the hospital.