Indo-Canadian restaurant blown up, suspect held

February 15th, 2008 - 3:02 pm ICT by admin  

Vancouver, Feb 15 (IANS) A fast food restaurant owned by an Indo-Canadian was destroyed in a huge explosion on West Broadway here and the suspected arsonist, with 40 percent burns, has been arrested from the Surrey Memorial Hospital. Many other businesses, including a Starbucks and a fashion garment shop, were also destroyed in the Wednesday night explosion that could be heard more than 10 blocks away. The reported loss is said to run into millions of dollars.

The footage from surveillance cameras in the area and digital cameras in the two cabs the suspect used to escape led to his arrest.

Soothing public fears, the police said the explosion was the result of a botched arson bid, not a terror attack.

“We believe this was an arson, a set fire that went terribly wrong for the person who set it,” a police spokesman said.

He said the restaurant was blown off when the aerosol fuel, being used by the suspect to set it alight, caught fire, leading to the massive explosion.

Having burnt himself badly, the suspect is said to have tried to discard his clothes and run away.

Manjit Nanda, wife of owner Harjit Nanda, said they didn’t suspect anyone would target their restaurant.

“I am shaken up. I’d just like to know what happened,” she told a TV channel.

She said they had put the restaurant on sale to get “some rest”.

The restaurant was put on sale probably for poor sales, though it is located in the upscale area of Vancouver, not far from downtown.

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