Mumbai serial blasts linked to Varanasi, Delhi | mumbai | Hindustan Times
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Mumbai serial blasts linked to Varanasi, Delhi

Investigators probing the triple blasts in Mumbai on July 13 have narrowed down the likely perpetrators to terror outfit Indian Mujahideen. This is after investigators concluded that the bombs used in Mumbai were similar to those that went off in Varanasi last December and outside the Delhi high court this May. Shailendra Mohan reports.

mumbai Updated: Jul 19, 2011 01:10 IST
Shailendra Mohan

Investigators probing the triple blasts in Mumbai on July 13 have narrowed down the likely perpetrators to terror outfit Indian Mujahideen. This is after investigators concluded that the bombs used in Mumbai were similar to those that went off in Varanasi last December and outside the Delhi high court this May.

“Ammonium nitrate along with fuel oil was used in the previous blasts and in both cases the bombs were small and kept in tiffin carriers, which allowed better portability,” said an officer on condition of anonymity.

He said investigators suspect that the same group is behind the two previous blasts and the firing at Delhi’s Jama Masjid in which a bus carrying foreigners was shot at by two motorcycle-borne assailants on September 19, 2010, a day before the Commonwealth Games began.

A bomb placed in a tiffin box had gone off at Sheetla Ghat in Varanasi on December 7, 2010. A girl had died instantly and more than 20 people were injured.

An elderly woman succumbed to her injuries later.

The bomb that exploded outside the Delhi high court on May 25 this year did not cause any casualties. Investigators suspect that a module of IM, comprising of youths from Azamgarh in UP, may have been involved in these attacks as well as in the Mumbai blasts.

“We suspect that like the previous module which carried out a series of attacks in 2008 and was busted by the Mumbai Police’s crime branch, this group is moving from one place to another and carrying out attacks. He said a police team had gone to Azamgarh to hunt for clues but returned empty-handed. Meanwhile, the CCTV footage from various cameras has been forwarded to a private firm to get clearer images.

Probe spreads across country

The probe into the serial blasts in Mumbai on July 13 has spread across the country and suspects are being questioned to establish leads.

Ahmedabad Police are interrogating Indian Mujahideen (IM) operative Danish Riyaz, who had sent emails to top leaders of the outfit before his arrest in June from Vadodara.

Riyaz, who was a techie, is an accused in the 2008 Gujarat blasts in which more than 50 people had died. "Before his arrest, Riyaz had sent emails to top brass of the IM like Abdus Shubhan alias Tauqeer, Abdul Raziq and Mujeeb Sheikh and

Kolkata-based Haroon. We are trying to find out if any exchanges took place between them in connection with the recent blasts in Mumbai," Joint CP , Ahmedabad crime branch, Mohan Jha said.

Bihar Police are questioning suspected Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HuJI) operative Mohammad Riyazul Sarkar, who was arrested from Kishanganj district on Saturday.

Kishanganj superintendent of police RK Mishra said Sarkar was a Bangladeshi national and had sneaked into India in 2000.

He added Sarkar’s hands were burnt and so are being examined.

Meanwhile, the union home ministry has asked intelligence agencies to prepare a list of persons who have disappeared from four West Bengal districts bordering neighbouring Bangladesh — Malda, Murshidabad, Nadia and North 24 Parganas — from where terrorist outfits are suspected of roping in recruits.