The three accused - Syed Ismail Afaq, 34, Saddam Hussein, 35, and Abdus Subur, 24 - were arrested in Bhatkal in the coastal district of Uttara Kannada and brought to the city for interrogation," Commissioner of Police M.N. Reddi told reporters here.

A police team raided the homes of the accused in Bhatkal, 480 km from here, and found substantial quantities of explosives (ammonium nitrate), detonators, electronic timer devices, digital circuits, circuit-making material, gas-based explosive material and fuel oil.

Police seized the items under the Explosives Act.

"During raids at a rented house of the accused in the city's northwest suburb, our probe team found several incriminating material including communication equipment, laptops and other equipment, which were seized," Reddi said.

Investigation into the low-intensity blast outside a popular restaurant on the upscale Church Street revealed that the accused trio were found to be in regular interaction with other members of the banned organisation.

The three were working under instructions of a handler, who was yet to be identified, the police chief said.

Police registered a case against the three under various sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

The explosive substances were meant to be used for making IEDs (improvised explosive devices), he said. Details of the substances seized will be known after forensic examination.

"Similarly, the communication equipment are being examined for their detailed usage and whether it can be an additive for the explosive devices," he said.

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