The Mangaluru airport is on a high alert after an unattended bag with a low-intensity explosive was recovered at the terminal building yesterday morning, sources said, adding an IndiGo flight was called back for checks following a threat call in the afternoon.
It all began at 8.45am when the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF), the paramilitary force mandated to guard airport terminals in India, recovered a black bag at the IndiGo ticket counter and later a Bomb Detection and Disposal Squad (BDDS) declared that an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) was inside it.
CISF Deputy Inspector General Anil Pandey told IANS that it was a “low intensity” IED. The IED was later put inside the cooling pit and defused.
“The CISF scrutinised the CCTV footage outside the terminal building and it was found that a man wearing a white cap left the bag at the IndiGo counter and left the airport in an auto-rickshaw,” Pandey said.
It is learnt that the bag contained nails, battery, wire, timer, switch and a detonator necessary for manufacturing an IED, sources said.
As the security agencies went into a tizzy with CISF and state police sanitising the airport terminal, an unknown threat call was received by the terminal manager around 3.30pm about a bomb aboard an IndiGo flight from Mangaluru to Bengaluru.
The sources said the flight, which was about to takeoff, was called back for checks.
“Nothing objectionable was found on the flight on checking. A complete sanitisation operation was carried out at the airport after the caller threatened that it is just a “trailer”, the sources said.
The Mangaluru police have released photographs and CCTV footage of the suspected man getting out of the terminal building and leaving in the auto-rickshaw.
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