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Month on, no trace of Delhi bombers

Police admit they are nowhere close to catching those who carried out the Oct 29 blasts that killed nearly 70 people.

india Updated: Jan 04, 2006 14:04 IST
Gyan Varma (IANS)
Gyan Varma (IANS)

Despite a month of painstaking investigation that continues, Delhi Police admit they are nowhere close to catching those who carried out the worst terrorist attacks in the capital that killed nearly 70 people.

"The case is not solved because we have not been able to break the deadly network of the terrorists," Deputy Commissioner of Police Ajay Kumar said, a month after the October 29 explosions in two crowded markets and in a bus that also injured some 200 people.

In a frank admission, Kumar said that Delhi Police had not been able to penetrate the terrorist network that carried out the attacks and which could, given the chance, try to do so again.

Three people have been arrested for the blasts, which claimed lives in the Sarojini Nagar market and at Paharganj. A third bomb did not kill anyone but left the driver of the bus where it had been kept badly injured.

The bombings, on the eve of the Diwali and Id festivals, were the worst terror attack in the city in two decades.

One of the arrested men is Tariq Ahmed Dar, a Jammu and Kashmir resident who admitted before a court here that he did help Pakistan-based terrorist groups in money laundering but had no direct links with the blasts.

The other two men in custody are those who assisted, in some ways or another, Dar, who is an executive of a leading multinational that makes baby products.

"We have to go a long way as a lot of people have to be arrested. We have just managed to arrest one of the key conspirators and two of his aides who had provided help to carry out the attacks," said Kumar.

He said a special team of Delhi Police had been stationed in Srinagar since the blasts after discovering that mysterious telephone calls were made to Jammu and Kashmir immediately after the event.

"The interrogation of Tariq Dar has helped us identify some of the key conspirators but the case would be closed only after all the people are arrested and their network busted," said Kumar.

According to police sources, the nom de guerre of the men who are believed to be responsible for the Delhi bombings are Abu Fazal and Abu Huzefa, both Pakistanis and area commanders of Lashkar-e-Taiba, an Islamabad-backed terror outfit.

Security agencies say both men may still be holed up in Jammu and Kashmir.

Dar reportedly called a media organisation after the blasts to claim responsibility on behalf of a little known group called the Inquilab-e-Mehez. Authorities say this was meant to put the investigators off the track.

Dar has been previously associated with the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen and reportedly now has a hand in the financial transactions of Lashkar.

Some officials say the Jaish-e-Mohammed, another Pakistan-based terrorist group, may have supplied the RDX explosives that were used in the bombings.

Islamabad has denied any official involvement and promised full cooperation with Indian investigators.

The bodies of some of the victims are yet to be recognised as they are badly burnt. To make matters worse, the fate of some people who were in the markets at the time of the blasts is not known - did they die, and if yes where are their bodies?

First Published: Nov 28, 2005 13:03 IST