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Indian Mujahideen, still a mystery

Indian Mujahideen — the group that has laid claim to three terrorist attacks including the last one in Ahmedabad — is still a mystery to India’s security establishment, report Nandini R Iyer & Aloke Tikku.

india Updated: Aug 01, 2008 00:22 IST

Indian Mujahideen — the group that has laid claim to three terrorist attacks including the last one in Ahmedabad — is still a mystery to India’s security establishment.

But there is hope.

Authorities in Delhi sounded an optimistic note claiming there were some leads that investigators were working on to get an idea of the terror outfits and people who executed the serial blasts in Bangalore and Ahmedabad and left behind a string of unexploded bombs in Surat.

The blasts also figured at a 45-minute meeting between President Pratibha Patil and Manmohan Singh when the Prime Minister called on her at Rashtrapati Bhavan ahead of his Colombo visit for the Saarc Summit.

Intelligence agencies suspect Indian Mujahideen could be the front for a combination of some proscribed groups that have been active in recent years — Students Islamic Movement of India, the Lashkar-e-Tayyeba or others like HuJI — to prevent fingers from being pointed at Pakistan.

Officials, however, conceded that they did not have a fair idea of the names, faces or the organisational structure of the suspected amalgam of Indian Mujahideen as they do for outfits like LeT.

“The fact is that we really do not know anything about it…it would be preposterous to say that we have been able to lay our hands on it,” a Home Ministry official said.

The official pointed out that one reason for their inability to put a finger on the culprits was due to the absence of any arrests. “It is during interrogation of the terrorists that we get an insight into the organisation.”

Ministry officials said they had linked LeT with Indian Mujahideen due to some similarities in the way the blasts were executed. There is a pattern to the blasts over the past year, beginning with the multiple-bombings in Hyderabad and the court blasts in Uttar Pradesh at Varanasi, Faizabad and Lucknow.

“We can see some matching footprints in these attacks,” an official said, adding there were nevertheless some differences also.

In three cities, for instance, the terrorists used similar containers to pack the explosives. In two, the detonators were similar.