NIA to grill terror suspects to find North-South link
After the Karnataka Anti-Terror Squad, sleuths of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) are expected to land here and probe the external and internal links of the three terror suspects, ‘Police’ Fakrudin, ‘Panna’ Ismail and Bilal Malik, arrested recently by the Special Investigation Division (SID) of the Tamil Nadu CB-CID wing and the Andhra Pradesh police in a joint operation.
On May 25, 2011 a minor blast was triggered from a car parked outside Delhi High Court. However, there was no casualty. In the Hyderabad twin blasts that occurred on February 21 this year, 17 persons were killed and about 120 were injured. On April 17 this year, a blast outside the BJP party office in Malleswaram rocked Bangalore though there was no casualty.
“There are a lot of similarities in all three blasts, as all of these were carried out using Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). In the Delhi blast, the terrorists had used a car and in the Hyderabad twin blasts, they had used two cycles planted with IEDs. In the Bangalore incident, a bike planted with IED was parked near the BJP party office. The modus operandi seems to be similar,” said a senior police official.
“Quizzing these terror suspects may help the NIA get some valuable information about the link between the terror groups operating in the south and those in the north,” he added.
At present, Fakruddin is in the custody of the SIT, which is interrogating him for his alleged role in the murder of two Hindutva leaders and the bid to blow up the convoy of BJP senior leader LK Advani by planting pipe bombs near Thirumangalam in Madurai. Ismail, who sustained a bullet injury during the standoff at Puttur, is being treated at the RGGGH, while Bilal Malik has been remanded in judicial custody.
Abubakker Siddique, a trained ISI agent and an expert in bomb making, who was also wanted by the State police in connection with the pipe bomb case and murders, is still at large.
B’lore Cops’ Plan
A team of officials from the Bangalore Central Crime Branch (CCB), which was camping in the city to interrogate the trio — ‘Police’ Fakruddin, Panna Ismail and Bilal Malik — has moved to Vellore to grill Fakruddin in connection with the Bangalore blast.
According to a top official, the Bangalore team left for Vellore on Monday. The team, which arrived in the city on Sunday, could not speak to Ismail, who was admitted to the RGGGH.
The officials met the Special Investigation Division (SID) - CB-CID officials and held discussions on how to proceed with the legal formalities, including recording of the formal statements of the accused.
After the meeting, the officials from the neighbouring State decided to move to Vellore to grill Fakruddin who is already being quizzed by the SID for his role in the murders of Hindutva leaders and the bid to blow up BJP leader LK Advani’s convoy near Madurai in 2011.
Speaking to Express, Bangalore CCB Joint Commissioner of Police Pranab Mohanty said that he was awaiting the final report from his team. Asked whether the interrogation was to gather more material from the accused, the official said that the involvement of all the four accused had already been established with the material evidences.
Meanwhile, SID head & CB-CID IG Mahesh Kumar Aggarwal told the media that they were proceeding with the investigation in the murder of the two Hindu outfit leaders in the State and the role of the accused in the pipe bomb case.
On news reports that Fakruddin had carried out recce to eliminate Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi, Mahesh Kumar Aggarwal maintained that they were pursuing the investigation.