Various agencies, including the NIA, Railway Police and different wings of the Kerala Police are now on the prowl to nab the suspect who set his co-passengers on fire inside a moving Kannur-bound train.
On Sunday, seeing the man throwing petrol and lighting it up, three passengers who are believed to have jumped off the Alappuzha-Kannur Executive Express, were found dead on the track. A two-year-old girl and her aunt were among the deceased.
According to sources, when the train was about to cross the Korapuzha bridge between Kozhikode and Kannur stretch around 9.30 p.m., a middle-aged man sprayed petrol on passengers and set them ablaze.
Nine passengers, who suffered burn injuries, are undergoing treatment at a Kozhikode hospital.
On Monday afternoon, the Kerala Police released the picture of a suspect who has been identified as Noida resident Shahrukh Saif as the one who has done the crime.
The police got the vital information by probing the social media accounts through a mobile phone which was recovered from the side of the railway track, though the Sim Card tray was empty and the phone was last used on March 30.
Shahrukh Saif is understood to be working as a labourer in Kozhikode.
A team of NIA officials and top officials of the Railway Police Force have already arrived at Kannur and are conducting the inspection of the ill-fated railway compartment, while different teams of the Kerala Police and the Railway Police have already reached Noida to find out more about the present suspect Saif.
Incidentally, hopes were raised when a CCTV visual of a man wearing a red shirt was seen getting on to a two-wheeler around 11.30 p.m. on Sunday night, about 50 meters from the railway track where the suspect jumped out of the train.
Late Monday night, the police clarified that the man getting onto the two-wheeler was not the suspect and it was another person and cleared him.
State Police chief Anil Kant has given the charge of the 18-member probe team to Additional DGP M.R. Ajithkumar.
“The probe has just started and at the moment we are unable to give out any details of the case as things have just started,” said Ajithkumar.
The police had recovered a bag and a switched-off mobile phone from the spot.
The bag contained a piece of paper with a note in English and Hindi about places in nearby Thiruvananthapuram and Kanyakumari. It also had a pair of dress, spectacles, and a bottle containing petrol.
Though Kant on Monday expressed confidence that vital clues have been found out, the suspect continues to be at large. The officer appeared confident that the police will be able to crack the case soon.
(This article has been published via a syndicated feed)