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41 live grenades recovered from B'desh village

The grenades have been recovered from a village in Satkhira district that adjoins West Bengal in India with authorities tracing a link to the attack on an Awami League rally in 2004.

world Updated: Feb 17, 2008 16:18 IST

Forty-one live grenades have been recovered from a village in Bangladesh's Satkhira district that adjoins West Bengal in India with authorities tracing a link to the attack on an Awami League rally in 2004.

The grenades seized on Friday night are identical to those used in the Aug 21, 2004 blasts, when former prime minister Sheikh Hasina escaped an attempt on her life, The Daily Star said on Sunday.

The elite Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) made the seizure at Simulia village of Debhata upazila following leads from a jailed HUJI leader Mufti Moin Uddin alias Abu Jandal alias Masum Billah.

"The grenades recovered from Satkhira are similar in every detail with those used in the Aug 21 attack," RAB's Director General Hassan Mahmood Khandkar told media.

During the Friday night raid, they also picked up Nazrul Islam Ghorami, a suspected operative of Harkatul Jihad al Islami (HUJI).

"The arrests will provide important leads in investigation of the August 21 grenade attacks," Khandkar said.

Arrested HUJI operation commander Mufti Hannan had earlier told investigators that Moin Uddin, his close aide, led the August 21 grenade attack, said a top official requesting not to be named.

In an editorial, The Daily Star linked the seizure to those earlier made in different parts of Bangladesh saying: "The wide territorial range of the findings should be an eye opener to the tentacles of the terrorist threats."

Militancy sponsored by Islamist religious groups has been on the rise in Bangladesh, especially since 9/11 terrorist attack on US in 2001. The then Zia government denied it, but under international pressure she later banned some of them.