An alleged Indian Mujahideen (IM) member with a Rs 1 lakh bounty on his head was caught by the Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terror Squad from Siddharth Nagar district near Nepal, about 300 km from Lucknow.
Salman alias Chotu, 29, is the alleged bomb maker of the group. According to Delhi Police, he is one of the 13 men who escaped from the Capital after the Batla House encounter in September 2008.
Salman is so far the only IM operative caught after the Pune blast. “We believe he is involved or at least has information regarding the blast. He has been involved in all the major blasts since 2007. We are interrogating him right now. We also believe that he has information of the future plans of the IM,” said a UP ATS officer.
According to UP ATS Salman was a key member of the group that carried out the 2008 Delhi serial blasts. He was also allegedly involved in the Jaipur and Ahmedabad serial blasts.
A team of the Special Cell of the Delhi Police has rushed to Lucknow to question Salman. Mumbai ATS, Pune Police, UP STF, Rajasthan Police and Gujarat ATS have all dispatched teams to Lucknow to question him for various terror attacks.
Brij Lal, UP Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) said, “In the 2007 and 2008 Salman was involved in a series of serial bomb blasts in the country. He had been operating from the Nepal border. His main area of operation was Uttar Pradesh and Bihar.”
The UP ATS caught the Azamgarh native from near a railway station in Siddarth Nagar while he was enroute to Nepal. The UP police have recovered a number of fake passports he used to go to Pakistan via Nepal.