Kerala Christian centre blasts: Death toll rises to 3 as 12-year-old girl succumbs to injuries
Two women had died earlier in the blasts at a Christian religious gathering while more than 50 were injured.
Veena Geroeg (L), the health minister of the southern Indian state of Kerala, speaks to a person injured in the blasts at the convention centre in the southern state, in a hospital on Sunday, October 29, 2023. (PTI Photo)
THE death toll from the series of explosions that rocked a convention centre in Kalamassery in the southern Indian state of Kerala increased to three on Monday (30) after a 12-year-old girl, who was among the injured, died at a local government hospital.
The victim, identified as Libina, hailed from Ernakulam district of Kerala and suffered 95 per cent of burn injuries. She was put on ventilator support.
Two women had died earlier in the blasts at a Christian religious gathering while more than 50 were injured. They took place when hundreds of followers of Jehovah’s Witnesses, a minority Christian group, had assembled on the concluding day of the three-day prayer meeting.
Big Indian cities such as New Delhi and Mumbai, the country’s political and financial capital, respectively, were put on high alert following the blasts. A man, claiming to be a member of Jehovah’s Witnesses, surrendered before the police in Thrissur district of Kerala later.
The state police said improvised explosive devices were used in the blasts. The explosives were kept in a tiffin box, sources told the media.
Officials said around 2,000 people were present at the centre when the blasts happened.
Indian home minister Amit Shah spoke to the chief minister of Kerala, Pinarayi Vijayan, and said teams of the National Investigation Agency and National Security Guard were sent to the spot to take over the probe.
Police registered a first-information report against unknown persons under Sections 302 (murder) and 307 (attempt to murder) of the Indian Penal Code as well as provisions of the Explosives Act and the anti-terror law Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.