Its much-publicised mix-up with the Delhi police may have cost the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad a chance to apprehend the perpetrators of the July 13 blasts. But the ATS reckons not all is lost and at least one of the two Pakistani suspects is still be holed up in the city.
Acting on this conviction, the ATS has formed three special squads to track down Wasim, the Pakistani bomber who was earlier presumed to have escaped. The ATS suspects he is still in the city and holed up in a south Mumbai hotel. The agency suspects that Wasim has become cautious following the media coverage of the botched up operation, and is waiting to sneak out of the city once the dust settles.
Sources in the ATS said that a search of the Byculla one-room tenement allegedly rented by Yasin Bhatkal to house the Pakistani bombers has returned some interesting results. “We came across old newspaper clippings about the blast investigation. Strangely, these include clippings of Marathi newspapers,” a source said. “It could either mean the Pakistanis knew the [Marathi] language or someone translated the news for them. We suspect that the aide could either be Yasin Bhatkal, who has a known flair in the language, or some other local,” the source added. The ATS has also found a stethoscope, otherwise used by physicians.
“We suspect that Yasin, who is an expert in Yunani medicine, might have used the instrument to gain entry into hospitals in the vicinity. Either that, or it was used as a sensor while making the bomb and keeping tab on any noise outside the room,” the source said. It is also suspected that the Pakistani duo visited several high-security locations in the city by posing as taxi drivers.