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Another alarm in Delhi

Staff Reporter

Hoax callers have a field day in the Capital... .

— Photo: Anu Pushkarna

BOMB SCARE: A dog squad on the job at Palika Bazaar in New Delhi on Saturday after a call was received at the Police Control Room that bombs had been placed there. The call turned out to be a hoax.

NEW DELHI: An anonymous phone call claiming that three bombs had been planted inside the bustling Palika Bazaar at Connaught Place in the heart of the Capital led to a great deal of panic among shopkeepers and shoppers during the peak shopping hour on Saturday evening, forcing the police to evacuate the entire market complex and carry out a massive combing operation that lasted two hours. At the end of it all, no explosives were found and the call was declared a hoax.

It was around 6 p.m. that the Police Control Room received the call claiming that bombs had been planted at three different places inside the underground Palika Bazaar complex and that they would explode within half-an-hour. In the wake of the serial blasts that rocked the Capital exactly a week ago, the call was taken very seriously notwithstanding the fact that there have been a series of hoax calls to the Delhi police over this past week. Senior police officers swung into action and rushed to Palika Bazaar along with the Bomb Disposal Squad and sniffer dogs. As the news spread among shopkeepers, they began downing the shutters and gathered along the radial roads of the complex.

This led to confusion among the shoppers who began running in different directions in a bid to get out of the complex as quickly as possible. However, the police with the help of the market association leaders managed to impress upon the shoppers to vacate the premises slowly to avoid any mishap. Policemen were deployed at all the exit doors to help in smooth evacuation.

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