Inter-agency rivalry hits investigations | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Inter-agency rivalry hits investigations

The lack of cooperation among the investigative agencies has affected the probe into the July 13 bomb blasts, which has hit several roadblocks in the past one month.

mumbai Updated: Aug 13, 2011 02:39 IST
Shailendra Mohan

The lack of cooperation among the investigative agencies has affected the probe into the July 13 bomb blasts, which has hit several roadblocks in the past one month.

Just two days after the blasts, it was reported that a senior National Investigating Agency (NIA) officer had left the city, upset with the “lack” of support from the state Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS). The report suggested the NIA had pulled out its team from the investigation. Later, union home minister P Chidambaram issued a statement clarifying that NIA was still a part of the investigation.

The death of Faiz Usmani, brother of Indian Mujahiddin suspect Afzal, an accused in the Gujarat blasts case, in the unit 6 office of crime branch where he was being interrogated too raised several questions.

Meanwhile, the forensic reports prepared by the National Security Guard (NSG) and the NIA differed on the type of explosives and timer devices used for the blasts. While the NIA experts claimed that the three bombs were made of a mixture of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil (AnFO) and did not have a high-intensity explosive such as RDX or PETN as a booster, the NSG team, part of its National Bomb Data Centre, concluded that trinitrotoluene or TNT was used as a booster. The two agencies also disagreed on the nature of the device used to set off the bombs.

Despite their attempts to project a joint stand, the two local agencies -- state ATS and city crime branch -- too have been at loggerheads.

With the crime branch officers giving it a miss, the daily joint meetings at the ATS headquarters too have fizzled out.