50 firecrackers, petrol used for blast in Kalamassery, claims accused

Dominic Martin, accused in Kalamassery blast case claimed that he placed the explosives inside the hall around 7 am on Sunday. Photo: Manorama News

Kochi: Dominic Martin, the lone accused in the Kalamassery blast case has told police that he had used 50 'gundu' (a type of firecracker) and eight litres of petrol in the blast at the Jehovah's Witnesses prayer meeting at Kalamassery in Kochi on Sunday. 

In his statement to the police, he claimed that he set fire to the gundu by operating the IED. The National Security Guards (NSG) team has recovered the remains of the circuit that was used for the blast. Martin has confessed that he had placed the explosives inside plastic bags in the hall. He has surrendered before Kodakara police in Thrissur with evidence to substantiate his claims, sources said.

Police have recovered some visuals from his phone to prove the charges. Martin reportedly placed the explosives in six places inside the hall with the aim of killing the participants of the Jehovah's Witnesses convention.

He purchased 50 gundu from a firecracker shop at Tripunithura. During the interrogation, he told police that he spent Rs 3,000 to make the bomb and learned how to make the electric detonator from YouTube videos.

Martin's mother-in-law attended convention

Meanwhile, reports say that Martin's mother-in-law was also among the participants at the convention. She survived the blast without any burns, Manorama News reported.

Martin made the bomb on the terrace of his ancestral house at Aluva on Sunday. He placed the plastic bags containing the explosives inside the hall at Kalamassery around 7 am. Later, he recorded a video confessing to the crime and uploaded it on Facebook.

To record the video, he rented a room at a lodge in Koratty. The staff at the lodge told Manorama News that he took room around 10.45 am and left within 10 minutes. “He looked tense. After 10 minutes, he reached the reception claiming that he needed to check out as a relative had met with an accident,” said the receptionist at the lodge.

Six-year-long vengeance

Three people were killed and 51 were injured in the multiple blasts that occurred at the convention centre. Among the injured, 18 are admitted to ICU. Hours after police and central agencies initiated a probe suspecting terror angle, Martin surrendered before Kodakara police claiming responsibility for the attack. He claimed that he vowed to end the Jehovah's Witnesses group as its ideology was dangerous for the country. 

Manorama News reported that Martin, who was employed as a foreman in Dubai, returned to Kerala after six years to take revenge on the community. It is learnt that he was upset with the Jehovah's Witnesses as the leadership was not ready to pay heed to his arguments opposing their ideology. Though the accused claimed that he committed the crime alone, the mystery is looming over the man's claims.

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