- The police said the grenade was under a bus at a bus stand in Jammu
- Those injured in the attack are bus drivers and conductors, officials say
- The attack comes a week after the IAF strike on Jaish camp in Pakistan
A grenade lobbed by a minor at a bus stand in Jammu this afternoon killed a teen and injured at least 30 others, the police said. The attacker, who has been arrested, is a class 9th student, said to be 15 or 16 years old. Police say he was indoctrinated by the Hizbul Mujahideen and tasked to carry out the strike.
The teen who died was 17 years old - Mohammad Sharik, a resident of Uttarakhand's Haridwar, had sustained fatal splinter injuries in the chest. All the injured have been hospitalised and five of them are critical, doctors said. Most of the injured, an officer said, are bus drivers and conductors.
The grenade attack comes three weeks after the suicide bombing at Pulwama in which 40 soldiers died.
The attacker, sources say, is a student of a private school in south Kashmir's Kulgam, who reached Jammu this morning. Questions are now being raised on how he could travel all the way undetected and also against the traffic movement on Srinagar-Jammu National Highway which is open for only one-way traffic. Yesterday, traffic was allowed from Jammu to Srinagar.
The police said they identified him using the CCTV footage from the area and the help of eyewitnesses. A red rucksack he was carrying helped in the identification.
The teen had mingled with a group of Kashmiris waiting at the bus stand before he lobbed the grenade under a parked bus around 11.30 am.
After the blast, the teen tried to flee to Kashmir. He was caught by the personnel at a police check post at Nagrota, 20 km from Jammu.
"He has confessed to his crime. A Hizbul commander from Kulgam had tasked him with the grenade attack," said Manish K Sinha, an officer of the state police.
The attack, officers said, was aimed at creating communal polarisation in Jammu.
This is the third grenade attack by terrorists in the bus stand area of the city since May last year.
The attack comes a week after the Indian Air Force carried out air strikes on the biggest terror camp of Jaish-e Mohammad in Pakistan's Balakot. Jaish has taken responsibility for the February 14 attack, surprising security forces who said the group's top order in the state has been wiped out.
With Jaish claims that the suicide bomber in Pulwama was a local terrorist, the security forces have been hunting for other members of the cell.