Nearly 51 students were rescued by the Italian police on Wednesday after they were held hostage by a school bus driver, who torched the bus. The horrific incident happened when the students of a secondary school in Vailati di Crema were going to a gym along with two adults in the school bus, when the driver Ousseynou Sy (47) of Senegalese origin deviated from the route, apparently heading for Milan's Linate airport.
The driver threatened the students at knifepoint saying that none of them will be getting out alive from the bus. The suspect is known to be angry about Italy's immigration policy and about the deaths of migrants in the Mediterranean, reports BBC.
Ousseynou was armed with two cans of petrol which he had poured all over the bus. He tied the students with electric cable and took their phones and set the bus ablaze.
However, one of the students managed to contact their parents who in turn alerted the police, which helped in stopping the heinous crime.
The police officials intercepted the school bus on the streets, which rammed onto several police vehicles before slowing down. As the bus came to a complete halt, the driver jumped out of the bus lighting it on fire.
The windows of the bus were smashed by the police and rescued the children without any casualties before the bus was enveloped in flames. The suspect was arrested by the police.
"It was a miracle, it could have been a massacre," said Milan chief prosecutor Francesco Greco. No terrorist links were ruled out in the incident but the officials are weighing terrorist charges against the suspect, said Greco.
Interior ministry officials are investigating the possibility of annulling the driver's Italian citizenship, as reported by AFP.