Explosives carried by PMPML, ST buses: Cops mull thorough security check

After the Delhi police revelation that terrorists transported explosives by a PMPML bus to Jangli Maharaj Road where the serial blasts took place on August 1, city police are mulling thorough inspection of buses during nakabandi operations, while experts and activists say PMPML and MSRTC should increase their vigilance and not push the issue under the carpet.

But even as commuters sound worried about their safety, PMPML administration remains clueless.

During German Bakery blasts also, explosives were transported from Udgir to Pune by a State Transport bus. "During both the blasts, bus service was used by terrorists because you can carry anything inside the buses without the luggage being checked. There is no system of checking luggage both in the city or State Transport bus services," said Prabhakar Patil, retired assistant commissioner of police.

Buses, said Patil, have been a convenient mode of transport for carrying weapons or explosives over the years. Recalling an incident that happened 10 years ago, Patil said, "After committing dacoity, rape and murder, the suspects had boarded an Asiad bus from Miraj and reached Karad with their weapons without any checking. We could catch them red-handed only when they were found bathing on the banks of a river."

Patil said even during nakabandi operations, buses are not checked as it was a cumbersome task to check each and every luggage and passenger. Agreeing with his, Deputy Commissioner of Police Shahaji Umap (Zone III) said, "It is difficult to carry out security of the entire bus. Practically, it is difficult to check bus after bus on busy roads. Therefore, miscreants seem to be making use of this mode."

But Umap said since this issue has once again come to light, they would start with checking of both city buses as well as State Transport buses during nakabandi operations. "We do check buses, but the freqeuncy is less. Now we will have to increase checking of buses," Umap said.

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