Union home minister P Chidambaram has warned the Maharashtra government he will be forced to hand over the probe into the 13/7 serial blasts in Mumbai to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) if the state police's anti-terrorism squad fails to deliver.
Chidambaram sounded the warning at a review meeting he held on late Monday night in Mumbai with chief minister Prithviraj Chavan, state home minister R R Patil, newly appointed director general of police K Subramaniam and other senior officials.
According to government sources, Chidambaram has been extremely concerned about divisions in the Maharashtra Police, with every unit operating on its own without any synergy.
Officials said that Chidambaram, who flew into Mumbai straight from his Kerala holiday, impressed upon Chavan to ensure that his police force operates in unison as the state is facing serious threats from terrorists and Naxals in the Gadchiroli area.
According to the NIA, the links to the Jama Masjid blast of September 19, 2010 and the Varanasi blast of December 7, 2010 lie in Mumbai as e-mails taking credit for both the incidents were sent from the Maharashtra capital.
Chidambaram, during the meeting, also enquired about Patil and Mumbai Police Commissioner Arup Patnaik's recent visit to London to find out how the city and Scotland Yard used CC TV and other security instruments to tackle terrorists.
As many as 26 people died and over 130 were injured when blasts ripped through Dadar, Zaveri Bazaar and Opera House--all busy and crowded localities in Mumbai--on July 13.
The first explosion rocked Zaveri Bazar, a popular jewellery market, at 6.54 pm and a minute later another blast shook Diamond Market near Opera House, a busy business area. The third blast ripped through crowded Kabutarkhana area in Dadar area at 7.04 pm.