Delhi bomb scare: Around 100 schools get threat mails, cops say nothing found

According to Delhi Fire Service (DFS), at least 97 calls from different schools have been received till 12 noon on Wednesday. All the calls are being attended to diligently, an officer said.
Last Updated : 01 May 2024, 04:55 IST
Last Updated : 01 May 2024, 04:55 IST

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New Delhi/Noida: Around 100 schools across Delhi and its suburbs on Wednesday received identical bomb threats by email from a single source suspected to be from Russia in what is seen as an attempt to trigger unprecedented panic and throw the security apparatus into chaos.

The threat was declared a hoax as "nothing objectionable" has been found. In a post on X, Delhi Police said some schools of Delhi received emails regarding bomb threats following thorough check was conducted as per protocol and it "appears that these calls seem to be hoax".

Police, fire brigade and bomb disposal squads in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh's Noida, Greater Noida and Ghaziabad and Haryana's Gurugram were on their toes after school after school telephoned to inform about the emails they received early morning.

Delhi Fire Service said it has received 97 calls between 6 AM and 12 noon from schools.

Indications are that the email schools received had the same source and suspected to be sent from Russia. Investigators also said it is possible that the perpetrators may have masked their identity using the darknet.

The emails were sent from an email id sawariim@mail.ru and it read, "Kill them wherever you meet and drive them out of the places from which they drove you. There are many explosive devices in the school..."

As the news of the bomb threat spread and school authorities informed them about the developing situation, panicked parents rushed to schools to pick up their children.

Delhi Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena, who visited Model Town's DAV school that also received the bomb threat, said Delhi Police has traced the origin of the threat emails. Delhi Education Minister Atishi said they were in constant touch with the police and the schools.

The Delhi government also issued an advisory to schools asking them to check emails on official IDs timely.

Concerned parents at Mayur Vihar's Mother's Mary school and Chanakyapuri's Sanskriti School were seen assembling outside the premises to pick their children. "I dropped my child 10-15 minutes ago. Then I received a call from the school to take my child back due to some emergency," Vijay Kumar, a parent, said.

"I had come to drop off my children. I saw a lot of people had gathered here and there were shouts of people coming from inside the school. When we inquired, we didn't get any satisfactory response," said Manoj Kumar, parent of a student studying in the school.

Kirti, another parent, said she dropped her son at BGS International School, Dwarka, and was waiting outside for him to go inside when she saw him return back with school staff.

"As usual I was waiting outside of the school when I saw my son returning back along with all the staff members. I was very worried. When some people shouted that there was a bomb in school, I immediately asked my son to sit on my scooter," she said.

In Noida too, bomb disposal squads, sniffer dogs were rushed to the schools which received the threat. Overall security was beefed up in the twin cities as a precautionary measure. The threat was sent to branches of Delhi Public School (DPS) in Noida and Greater Noida, and some other schools via emails by an anonymous sender, Noida Police officials said.

The Union Home Ministry later termed the bomb threat as a "hoax" and asked people not to panic. Police and security agencies are taking necessary steps as per protocol, the ministry said.

"There is no need to panic. Mails appear to be hoax. Delhi Police and security agencies are taking necessary steps as per protocol," a home ministry official said.

Noida Police said all such schools that received the emails were thoroughly checked and the bomb threat was found to be a hoax, Additional Commissioner of Police (law and order) Shivhari Meena said.

"...schools that received the threats were thoroughly checked and sanitised. At no place, any such thing (threat) has come to light and it is proved that the email was sent to trigger a rumour," he said.

Reacting to the development, Delhi Lt Governor V K Saxena wrote on X that he spoke to the police commissioner and sought a detailed report into the bomb threats at schools in Delhi-NCR.

"Directed Delhi Police to carry out a thorough search in school premises, identify the culprits and ensure there are no lapses," he said, requesting parents not to panic and cooperate with the administration in ensuring safety of schools and the children.

"The miscreants and culprits will not be spared," he added.

Delhi Education Minister Atishi also requested parents not to panic and wrote on X, "Some schools have received bomb threats this morning. Students have been evacuated and those premises are being searched by Delhi Police. So far nothing has been found in any of the schools.

“We are in constant touch with the police and the schools. Would request parents and citizens not to panic. School authorities will be in touch with parents wherever needed,” Atishi said.

Several schools called and sent messages to parents to urgently pick their wards from the school.

The threat was sent to branches of Delhi Public School (DPS) in Noida and Greater Noida, and some other schools via emails by an anonymous sender, Noida police officials said.

According to police officials, initial investigations suggest that mails have been sent to multiple locations since Tuesday which appears to have the same pattern.

(With PTI inputs)

Published 01 May 2024, 02:28 IST

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