Wazahul Tamal Khan alias Babubhai made it a point to not stay at one place for long. He kept changing his address and managed to evade arrest despite being in the city since 2006.
Khan has been accused of conspiring to carry out the blast, which killed 12 people and injured more than 50.
Khan lived in Kurla before the blast. “After the Mulund blast, he escaped to Balrampur in Uttar Pradesh where his in-laws lived and then he shifted to Siddharthanagar which is close to the Indo-Nepal Border,” Additional Director General of Police Rakesh Maria said.
Maria added that Khan then shifted to Madhya Pradesh for some time. “Between 2003 and 2006, he kept moving between these places,” Maria said.
Khan returned to Mumbai in 2006 and set up an embroidery unit in Dharavi. He rented a house there for some time and then shifted to Goregaon.
Maria said the police were tracking Khan but he managed to evade arrest because he kept shifting from one place to another. “He even moved to Wagle Estate (Thane) for some time. His family is staying there,” Maria said.
Forty-four-year-old Khan was finally arrested from Kurla on Monday morning, seven years after the blast. He was also wanted in the Mumbai Central station blast of December 2002 and the January 2003 Vile Parle blasts. Police have said Khan is not linked to the December 2002 Ghatkopar bus blast.
One of the accused arrested after the Mulund blast named ‘Babubhai’, a martial arts expert during interrogation. This helped investigators zero in on Khan, who was trained in martial arts.
Police said Khan learnt to make bombs from Taheer Ansari alias Janab, who in turn had learnt it from Jalees Ansari. Jalees, who is currently serving a life term at Ajmer jail, had carried out more than 50 blasts in India between 1988 and 1992.
Maria said it is “too far fetched” to say that Khan may have links with those who carried out the February blast in Pune’s German Bakery. Maria said investigations into the Pune blast were “at an advanced stage”, but refused to elaborate.