Karela Fry

Just another WordPress.com weblog

Mumbai blasts case solved?

with one comment

Jan 22, 2012

The Maharashtra’s Anti-terrorism squad claims to have solved the Mumbai multiple bombings case of half a year ago. Moneycontrol reported:

The Maharashtra Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) on Monday claimed to have cracked the July 13, 2011 Mumbai blasts case, in which 27 people were killed and over 130 others injured. Two people, Naqee Ahmed and Nadeem Mukhtar, have been arrested and Yasin Bhatkal, who commissioned the blast and two others involved are yet to be arrested.

The police claimed that the financial trail of the blasts has been fully uncovered. “A lot of stress and importance was given to trace the financial trail of these blasts,” Maharashtra ATS chief Rakesh Maria said.

According to the Maharashtra ATS, 23-year old Naqee Ahmed and 22-year old Nadeem Mukhtar had stolen two scooters used in the blasts. Bhatkal reportedly gave Rs 1.5 lakh for the execution of the terror attack and provided the explosives for the blasts.

PostNoon added:

Claiming to have cracked the serial blasts that rocked Zaveri Bazar, Opera House and Dadar in south and central Mumbai in July last year, Maria said third suspect Haroon Rashid Naik, 33, was already behind bars in Mumbai.

“So, there would be technically three arrests and three (accused still) wanted in the case so far,” he said.

“Naqi is originally a resident of Darbhanga in Bihar, but had been in Mumbai since September-October 2010. Nadeem is from Deora Bandhauli, also in Darbhanga district, and has been staying in Mumbai since around the same time,” Maria said.

Maria said the main accused in the case, Yasin Bhatkal alias Imran, was still untraced. Bhatkal is known to be a prime operative of the Indian Mujahideen terror group.

“Yasin Bhatkal is the main accused in this case. He started the Darbhanga (terror) module where he held programmes to indoctrinate young boys and used them in such blasts,” Maria said.

Maria said that Naqi was also a suspect in a SIM card fraud. “Naqi provided SIM cards to other accused which were used during the commission of the blasts,” he said.

The ATS chief also thanked all the central and state agencies which extended help to Mumbai police during investigation.

“Our teams visited 18 states and a lead was obtained by the ATS in last week of November,” he said, adding that a total of 12,373 witnesses were examined in the case.

The investigation was being conducted by teams of Mumbai police, Maharashtra’s criminal investigation department, the National Investigation Agency and others, with support from security agencies in many states, he said.

TOI threw cold water on this story:

By declaring the arrest of Naqee Ahmed on Monday in last year’s serial blasts in Mumbai, security agencies in the national capital feel that the Maharashtra ATS may be attempting to cover its tracks after the bombers involved slipped out.

Though Maharashtra ATS chief Rakesh Maria was candid enough in admitting “competition” within various police forces in solving blast cases, officials at Union home ministry remained baffled as the announcement of arrest of 23-year-old Ahmed was flashed on television sets.

For the elite special cell of Delhi Police and special squad of Intelligence Bureau, Ahmed was the person who provided them with crucial leads in identifying Waqas and Tabrez, the two bombers in the 13/7 blast that left 27 people dead.

According to the officials, Ahmed was in Mumbai only to help in tracking down two bombers and the highly-secretive operation was being monitored by the top echelons of the security establishment closely from Delhi.

Ahmed was in the megapolis with undercover sleuths to help nab the two bombers, whom the Anti Terrorism Squad(ATS) chief on Monday identified as suspect A and suspect B.

Naquee’s submissions to the ATS form a part of statement that he had given to Delhi Police special cell.

In the national capital, his elder brother Taquee is moving from pillar to post to seek help for his brother.

“He has been helping the police only. Has this been heard before that a person is behind bars for being a informer of another police force. I think we are a democratic country,” Taquee said, as tears rolled down his cheeks.

In Mumbai court, Naquee’s counsel Khalid Azmi was reportedly disallowed from meeting his client.

The rivalry between the Maharashtra ATS and Delhi police was reported already 5 days ago in Outlook:

Maharashtra ATS chief Rakesh Maria is upset over the leakage of information about the operation to nab three suspects involved in 13\7 bomb blasts who had stayed in Byculla till December.

The ATS chief expressed his unhappiness during a meeting with state Home Department officials recently following media reports about three terror suspects who had stayed in a rented flat at Habib apartment in Byculla and escaped in December last week.

“Yes, he (Maria) is very upset with the leakage…During the meeting, he repeatedly stated that his team did not leak the information. Maria said Delhi police has done this (leaking information about the operation to media),” a police official said.

The Delhi police who were investigating the Delhi high court blast had reportedly camped in Mumbai over the last few weeks and chasing the suspects who were involved in a series of blasts including the one in Delhi high court.

Maria was miffed so much that he even switched off his phone since Monday when the news reports about the suspects appeared in media, the officer added.

The very dependable Chandigarh Tribune reported yesterday on the arrest of today’s main accused:

Is Naquee Ahmed another innocent Muslim youth in his early twenties to be unfairly detained, tortured and charged with terrorist links? Or, is he a terrorist or a terrorist in-the-making?

The answer is not forthcoming from either the Special Cell of the Delhi Police, which reportedly used the young man to identify culprits believed to have planted bombs in Zaveri Bazaar in Mumbai (July, 2011), or the Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) of the Mumbai Police, which picked him up in Mumbai on January 9 and formally arrested him the next day.

Keki N Daruwalla, a member of the National Commission for Minorities and himself a retired police officer, today complained that the ATS of Mumbai Police was stonewalling all queries related to the curious detention of Naquee Ahmed.

On Sunday, Daruwalla told The Tribune, “I tried to speak to Mumbai Police Commissioner Arun Patnaik and Maharashtra ATS Chief Rakesh Maria. I also sent them messages through SMS. But nobody has bothered to get back to me. I hope they respond tomorrow, when the offices open.”

Asked what were his options if they continued to ignore his request, the audibly frustrated NCM member said, “I don’t think we have too many options. It is now for the Home Ministry to take cognizance and take appropriate action.”

Exactly this story was also reported in IE two days ago:

Days after Mohammed Naquee, a leather factory owner, was arrested by the Mumbai ATS for alleged links with terror suspect Yasin Bhatkal and the 13/7 serial blasts in Mumbai, his family members are looking at legal options to help him secure bail. Currently in custody, Naquee will be produced in a Mumbai court on Monday.

A resident of Shaheen Bagh in Delhi, Naquee was picked up by the Mumbai ATS for arranging a one-room tenement for Bhatkal and his two aides, Waqas and Tabrez, in Byculla East through a broker who too is being questioned.

While the Mumbai ATS claims that he willingly helped Bhatkal and was, therefore, linked to the blasts, the Special Team of the Delhi Police claims that Naquee was an informer who they had taken to Mumbai to identify Bhatkal’s flat. The team has been camping in Mumbai since December 11.

Meanwhile, two days ago, TOI had reported how the botched arrest, leading to the escape, of the main accused, Bhatkal, had been taken up by the Home Minister:

After two Pakistan-based Indian Mujahideen operatives slipped out of the police net moments before their Mumbai hideout was raided, the country’s two anti-terror squads are embroiled in a bitter war of words. Concerned over the infighting between Maharashtra ATS and Delhi Police, Union home minister P Chidambaram has stepped in to douse the fire. He convened a meeting with the Delhi Police commissioner on Friday to take stock of sequence of incidents that took place at Byculla earlier this month.

Clearly this is not the end of the story. If the media reports are true and the ATS has arrested an informer then this is a big blow to fighting terror. By 14 July 2011 it was clear that there was massive intelligence failure, which stemmed essentially from a lack of police informers. That situation may just have got worse.

Jan 23, 2012

The Maharashtra ATS may just have struck a blow against out security, informs NDTV:

Hours after the Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) in Maharashtra announced that it had arrested three men who helped execute a trio of blasts in Mumbai in July last year, the Central government has made it clear that the Mumbai Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) had not only picked up the wrong men but had also blown a carefully launched covert operation to nab those involved in the terror attacks.

The excruciating embarrassment is exacerbated by the fact that one of the men arrested is actually an informer for Central intelligence agencies, according to sources in the Ministry of Home Affairs. The sources, who do not want to be identified, say the announcements made in Mumbai are “premature and misleading.”

On Monday afternoon, Rakesh Maria who heads the Anti-Terror Squad held a press conference in Mumbai where he described in great detail the role played by Haroon Rashid Naik who was found in Mumbai, and Nadeem Akhtar and Naqi Sheikh who were arrested from Bihar. They allegedly stole the scooters in which the bombs were planted, helped to rent a house for Mr Bhatkal, and ferried explosives between Delhi and Mumbai. But the three men arrested played peripheral roles. And though Naki Sheikh was in close touch with Mr Bhatkal for three months, during which period he was tailed by the Delhi Police, the leader of Indian Mujhadeen managed to slip away. He’s not alone. Home Ministry sources say that the two bombers behind the attacks are Tabrez and Waqar, Pakistani nationals, who have managed to escape because of the rivalry and consequent lack of coordination between the Delhi and Mumbai police.


Written by Arhopala Bazaloides

January 23, 2012 at 3:34 pm

One Response

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. […] squad and the Delhi police have a turf war, let the main accused escape, but one of them claims to have arrested the kingpins Share this:TwitterLike this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: