A 23-year-old serial conman who made hoax bomb threat calls to Chennai Central Railway Station was arrested by the Central Crime Branch (CCB) of the city police, on Wednesday. The police are conducting inquiries to find out if he had any connection with the blasts that took place on May 1.
The accused was identified as S Sivakumar, a native of Bengaluru and a Class IX dropout.
On Wednesday, at around 10 am, Sivakumar called the police control rooms and the 108 ambulance control room about a bomb planted at Central station near the wash room on the first platform. A thorough check by police and the bomb squad established that the call was a hoax.
Preliminary investigation revealed that Sivakumar was known for making hoax calls as a prank. Though a school dropout he is fluent in Tamil, Hindi, Kannada and Telugu. He would call the numbers on missing persons posters put up in railway stations and tell the families that he had specific information. He would take money from them, `5,000 - `15,000, mislead them and vanish.
After the hoax call the police traced his mobile number and realised that he was travelling by bus to Puducherry. With the help of Mamallapuram police, officials stopped the bus at Anumandai toll gate near Marakkanam on Wednesday morning and picked Sivakumar up. He was taken to the office of the Guindy Assistant Commissioner of Police.
Officials seized five SIM cards from him that were purchased in Tambaram, Velachery and Arakkonam in Chennai. “I made the call to create panic in the minds of the public and I wanted to see it covered in the media,” Sivakumar told the police.
“Eight months ago he was laid off from a snack stall at Saidapet for misconduct. He sought revenge by making a hoax call about a cylinder blast at the stall,” police said.
The accused was charged under the IT Act and was remanded to judicial custody. City Police Commissioner J K Tripathy warned that stringent action would be taken against those who indulge in such mischief.