By Annisa Essack
A suspected IED blast in the Ludhiana court complex has seen at least two killed and several injured today. The blast reportedly took place around 12:22 pm in the washroom on the third floor, when the district court was in session.
Sources said it seemed a “powerful blast” as the demolished washroom walls and window panes smashed. It was further reported that the bomb may have gone off in the washroom, as it is suspected that the IED device was being assembled there. Police have cordoned off the area, and the Bomb Detection and Disposal Squads was on its way to the blast site to analyse the type of explosives used.
The cause of the explosion was not immediately apparent.
Ludhiana CP Gurpreet Singh Bhullar said that the matter is being investigated. “We are verifying, injured have been sent to the hospital. The area will be sealed until the investigation is done,” he said, adding that the forensic teams will collect samples from the blast site.
In a Twitter post, Punjab state Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi expressed his sadness over the explosion and said he was heading to the site.
“I assure the people of the state that the guilty would not be spared,” he wrote.
“Anybody trying to disturb the peace and harmony of the state will be taken to task.”
Punjab’s Deputy Chief Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa said, “It’s a border state, and we cannot rule out hand of outside force.” On being asked about the possibility of a suicide attack, he said, “Nothing can be ruled out. The whole state is on high alert.”