When ‘black beauty’ kept NIA occupied

  • Rajesh Ahuja, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
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  • Updated: Dec 17, 2013 02:22 IST

An operative code-named ‘Black Beauty’ kept counter-terror officials on their toes a month prior to the Patna serial blasts and before his identity code could be cracked fully, the operative and his module managed to carry out synchronised explosions in the Bihar capital on October 27.

The first inkling about an upcoming Ranchi based module managed by a terror operative Black Beauty came from Yasin Bhatkal, an alleged top operative of Indian Mujahideen (IM) arrested in August this year.

“But Yasin also claimed that he didn’t know the real identity of Black Beauty. After Yasin’s revelation, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) decided to question Manzar Imam, another Ranchi-based alleged IM operative who had been arrested in March this year. Imam knew that Hyder Ali, a hardcore SIMI operative, was known as Black Beauty among his associates due to his dark complexion,” said a police official involved in the operation, who requested anonymity.

The official said a joint operation of Bihar and Jharkhand police along with the NIA investigators was launched to nab Hyder Ali and his associates at their known residences and hideouts. In the meanwhile, the NIA also got issued a non-bailable warrant almost a week before the Patna blasts. But Hyder Ali managed to keep himself away from the clutches of law.

When Imtiaz Ansari, a Ranchi native and alleged member of Hyder Ali’s group, was arrested on October 27 on the charges of planting bombs at Patna railway station, he also confirmed that Hyder Ali was known as Black Beauty.

The NIA has declared a cash reward on information leading to the arrest of Hyder Ali. The conter-terror officials believe he might have crossed-over to Nepal to evade arrest.

 

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