Several vehicles were gutted but there was no damage to the party office in the explosion that was initially believed to be a cylinder blast.
“The explosion took place around 10.20am and investigation is on to find out whether it is caused by a bomb as a motorbike was found at the site,” Bangalore Police Commissioner Raghavendra Auradkar told reporters.
The BJP office is located in the crowded residential locality of Malleshwaram in north Bangalore, about eight kilometres from the city centre.
The two seriously injured are women, one of whom has a suffered fracture in her leg, doctors at the KC General hospital, about five kilometres from the explosion site, told reporters.
“The others have suffered minor injuries with two of them complaining of loss of hearing,” the doctors said. Of the 16 injured, 11 are police personnel and five are civilians, including three women, Home Minister R. Ashoka said at the explosion site.
The policemen were in the van that was gutted in the explosion.
Residents in the area told reporters that the blast shook the windowpanes of several houses.
“This act was to terrorise BJP and its workers,” Ashoka said.
“We have sent a report to the central government,” the minister added.
Even as the investigations were on to ascertain the cause of the blast, Congress leader kicked up a storm with his remark that the blast near the BJP’s office in Bangalore would help the party in the Karnataka polls. “If the blast near BJP’s office in Bangalore is a terror attack, it will certainly help the BJP politically on the eve of election.”
But the party distanced itself from the leader’s tweet, saying the party had nothing to do with it and it was his personal view. “Any terror incident is a matter of concern... it is a national and international problem... it is a challenge for the country... it should not be seen as political gain,” Congress general secretary Janardhan Dwivedi said on Wednesday.
The state assembly elections are to be held May 5.
“I have not seen his tweet. What he said is his personal view and the party has nothing to do with it,” added Minister of State for Home R.P.N. Singh.
Ahmad’s remarks were criticised by the BJP as unwarranted and uncalled for.
“Such remarks are uncalled for and should not have come from a senior Congress leader. The party (Congress) has already accepted defeat in Karnataka,” added BJP spokesperson Meenakshi Lekhi.
“There should be no politics on such incidents,” BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain added.
Condemning Ahmad’s remarks, BJP president Rajnath Singh said: “Terrorism should not be seen as a political loss or gain.”
Stating that the incident was “unfortunate and condemnable”, he said party leaders were taking stock of the situation. “I talked to Karnataka Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar. We are taking stock of the situation,” Rajnath Singh said.
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