In the first significant lead in the Mumbai serial-blasts case, investigations have confirmed the involvement of some residents of Mahim.
Intelligence agencies say Mahim has emerged as a key link in the entire sequence of events and that these suspects not only provided the logistic support but also placed the IEDs on the seven trains.
These people -- their identity has been established -- are absconding. The Mumbai Police and central intelligence agencies have launched a hunt to trace these "local links" of the conspirators.
Currently, 11 residents of Mahim are being questioned by a joint team. "Initially over 200 Mahim residents were rounded up but we eventually zeroed down on these 11," says an official. "We feel they can provide more details about the suspects. The investigations, which confirmed strong local support, eventually led us to Mahim."
Investigators suspect that some of the suspects could be illegal Bangladeshi migrants who came to Mumbai a few months ago and settled in Mahim.
Investigations have shown that these local sleeper cells of the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) were constantly getting instructions from some people in J&K and Pakistan.
Though the Mumbai Police is yet to make any formal arrests, sources say the Mahim link has helped unravel a part of the conspiracy. While the RDX used in the explosions was brought by some LeT operatives from outside, the ammonium nitrate and fuel oil was procured locally by the suspects.