More ‘white powder’ found in UP Assembly; not explosive, say officials

Lucknow, July 15 (IANS) A thorough check in the Uttar Pradesh Assembly, where explosive powder was discovered on Thursday evening, by Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) sleuths found some more white powder but police denied it was another explosive.

Inspector General of Police, ATS, Aseem Arun denied claims in some sections of the media that another explosive had been discovered, while police identified the powder as magnesium sulphate, which is used as a drying agent in plastic packaging industry.

Meanwhile, an official told IANS that some packets of paan masala and ‘khaini’ were found in the House, and had probably been kept by lawmakers for their consumption. Though this had nothing to scare the security agencies, it left the political fraternity red-faced as consumption of ‘paan masala’ is banned in public by the Yogi Adityanath government.

Meanwhile, the PETN found in the state assembly has beens ent for further forensic testing, said officials. The National Investigative Agency (NIA), which began probing the matter on Saturday, went through the CCTV footage but denied they had questioned any legislator.

Director General of Police Sulkhan Singh said that an FIR has been lodged in the Hazratganj police station in the discovery of the explosive and that ATS is probing the matter. He also said that a formal request to the Union government for an NIA probe is being sent and as of now, they are only assisting the state agencies in the matter.

Arun meanwhile said that all witnesses will be questioned soon and that all aspects of the case will be thoroughly explored.

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