On the eve of the annual Jagannath Rath Yatra here, police today said it has found crude bombs during a search in Gomatipur, a communally-sensitive area of the city.
The 141st Rath Yatra (the chariot procession of Lord Jagannath) will start from the Jagannath temple in Jamalpur area amid tight security tomorrow morning and those expected to attend the event include Chief Minister Vijay Rupani and many other leaders.
Two persons including a bootlegger were detained following the recovery of explosives from the terrace of a house near Rajpur toll booth, inspector B V Zala of Gomatipur police station said.
Four crude bombs, similar to firecrackers made using ‘sutli’ (strings), 12 pipe bombs and a bottle of kerosene were found during the search, the police said.
An FIR has been lodged in the case which names Mohammad Anis Sandhi and his accomplice Mohammad Sharif Maniyar as suspects, inspector Zala said.
One of the two apparently owns the house from which the explosives were recovered, he said.
“Sharif is a bootlegger who is already facing several cases. Both are being interrogated,” he said.
Police have made elaborate security arrangement for tomorrow’s Rath Yatra, including use of Israel-made balloon cameras for aerial surveillance.
Around 20,000 police personnel, home guard, State Reserve Police and para-military forces will guard the 18-km route which passes through some communally sensitive areas.
Apart from the chariots of Lord Jagannath, his brother Balram and sister Subhadra, the procession will comprise 18 decorated elephants, 101 trucks with tableaux, and 18 singing troupes.
The procession, which is taken out on ‘Ashadhi Bij’, the second day of Ashadh as per the Hindu calender, will start from the 400-year-old Jagannath temple in Old city around 7 AM and return to the temple around 8.30 PM.