1993 blasts convict who went missing arrested from KanpurUpdated: Jan 17, 2020 23:53 IST
Dr Jalees Ansari, 68, serving life term for his role in multiple blasts in 1993, who went missing on January 16, a day before his parole ended, was arrested while coming out of a mosque in Kanpur around 12.30pm on Friday.
Ansari helped execute the series of 43 explosions in Ajmer, Pune, Hyderabad, Lucknow and Mumbai and seven separate explosions on trains on December 6, 1993, the first anniversary of the demolition of the Babri Masjid. Three bombs were planted on Rajdhani Express at Kanpur, Allahabad and Kota railway stations, one of Flying Queen near Valsad, one on AP Express at Moula Ali railway station, one on Bangalore Kurla Express near Karjat, one at Secunderabad railway station. He was convicted for carrying out blasts in trains.
“Ansari was serving life imprisonment in the Ajmer Central Prison in Rajasthan, but he was subsequently brought to Mumbai and kept at Arthur Road jail. He was released on a 21-day parole and was to report back on January 17 by 11am,” said a Mumbai crime branch officer.
He, however, went missing from his second floor residence at Ittehaad Co-operative society in Mominpura in Agripada in south Mumbai on Thursday morning.
Soon after, the Maharashtra anti-terrorism squad (ATS) alerted the special task force (STF) in Uttar Pradesh.
“The STF activated its manual intelligence and arrested Ansari while he was coming out of a mosque in Kanpur’s Faithfulganj locality around 12.30pm,” Uttar Pradesh director general of police OP Singh said
He said Ansari was taken to Lucknow for interrogation and will be handed over to the Maharashtra Police soon. “Our interrogation will reveal if Ansari wanted to escape or had any other intention. The STF will try to scan his network and people who visited him during the parole period,” said inspector general (IG) of police, STF, Amitabh Yash.
Vinay Rathod, deputy commissioner of police, Maharashtra ATS, confirmed the arrest and said Ansari would be brought to Mumbai soon. The ATS recovered ₹47,780 in cash, along with his PAN and Aadhaar card.
Ansari has four sons and three daughters. One of his daughters, who did not want to be identified, said Ansari woke up on Thursday around 4.30am and left the house without informing anyone.
“My mother woke up around 6am and thought he had gone for prayers as usual. When he did not return by 7am, we started to ask our neighbours, but nobody had seen him step out,” she said. “As he was out on parole, he used to go out only for prayers in the morning,” said another daughter.
While on parole, Ansari was to visit the Agripada police station everyday between 10.30am and 12pm to mark attendance. Ansari, however, did not visit the police station on Thursday during the designated time. In the afternoon, his son, Zahid, filed a missing person’s complaint.
Zahid said, “As soon as we realised he had gone out with his bag, we informed the Agripada police station.”