Police are searching for two suspects after a bomb detonated inside an Indian restaurant in Mississauga, injuring up to 15 people, three of them critically.
Peel police were called just after 10:30 p.m. EDT Thursday after reports of an explosion at the Bombay Bhel Restaurant.
At a news conference on Friday morning, Peel police Chief Jennifer Evans, said there is no indication that the explosion was an act of terrorism or a hate crime.
Peel Paramedics said at least three people — a 35-year-old man from Brampton, a 62-year-old Mississauga woman, and a 48-year-old Mississauga woman — were taken to a trauma centre in critical condition suffering from blast injuries. Their conditions are now considered stable.
Evans said another 12 people, ranging in age from 23 to 69, were treated for minor injuries and have been released from hospital. Children under 10 years old were inside as well but they were not hurt.
Evans said there were two separate birthday parties taking place at the restaurant at the time of the explosion.
“I want to assure everyone that every police resource is being used to location the people responsible for this horrendous act,” Evans said. She also asked that anyone who has surveillance or dashcam video taken around that time to contact police.
Mississauga Mayor Bonnie Crombie, who was also at the news conference, sent her thoughts and prayers to victims, adding that this is not the Mississauga she knows.
On social media, NDP Leader Andrea Horwath called it “Shocking and horrific” and a “cowardly attack.”
Liberal Leader Kathleen Wynne tweeted “We are all shocked and saddened by the news out of Mississauga. Our thoughts are with the victims and their families, and our thanks go out to the first responders. We are monitoring the situation and I will be briefed first thing this morning.”
And Ontario PC Leader Doug Ford tweeted that his “thoughts are with all those injured in the blast” and encouraged anyone with information about the explosion to call police.
Police said two suspects entered the restaurant and detonated an Improvised Explosive Device before fleeing the scene in a vehicle.
The first suspect is described as male in his mid-20s with light skin, five feet 10 inches to six feet tall with a stocky build. He was wearing dark blue jeans, a dark zip up hoodie pulled over his head, a baseball cap with a light grey peak and his face was covered with black cloth material.
The second suspect is described as a male with fair skin, five feet nine inches to five feet 10 inches tall with a thin build. He was wearing faded blue jeans, a dark zip up hoodie pulled over his head, a grey t-shirt, dark coloured skate shoes and his face was covered as well.
Police are asking anyone with information to contact them or Crime Stoppers.
The Consulate General of India in Toronto has opened a helpline in view of the explosion at an Indian restaurant in Mississauga for anyone needing assistance.