The Central Bureau of Investigation told the special Terrorist And Disruptive (Prevention) Activities court that Tahir Merchant alias Taklya, a key accused for the 1993 serial blasts’ case, has admitted to having been associated with Tiger Memon, the prime accused of the blast.
CBI also told the court that Taklya with other accused had planned to start an arms manufacturing factory in India. CBI arrested Taklya on June 8 after he was deported from Abu Dhabi by the Interpol.
The court in 1993 had issued a non-bailable warrant against him and declared him as absconding.
Taklya carried a reward of Rs 5 lakh on him and had allegedly arranged accommodation in Dubai for the accused who had gone to Pakistan to get arms training.
The CBI said Taklya showed videotapes of provocative speeches and the Babri Masjid demolition to the accused who went to Pakistan for training. CBI also said there are 33 other accused still absconding and they want to interrogate him to extract information about them.
The CBI said Taklya is not cooperating with the investigation. It also told the court that he has refused to answer any questions about his role and of other accused in the case.
Taklya's advocate Rizwan Merchant said the CBI wants his custody only to extract his confession even though he has said he doesn't want to give any.
The court remanded Taklya in CBI custody till June 19.
When Taklya's name was called out in court, he stood and said his name was not Tahir Merchant but Tahir Dada.
Thirteen powerful blasts had hit Mumbai on March 12, 1993. The death toll was 257 and 713 were injured.