COIMBATORE: An accused in the 1998 serial bomb blast case, who was absconding for two decades, was arrested by the Special Investigation Division (SID) of the CBCID and lodged in Coimbatore Central Prison on Tuesday.
Sources privy to the investigating officials said N P Noohu alias Rasheed alias Mankavu Rasheed (44) of Kozhikode in Kerala was taken into custody on Monday when he returned to his native from Qatar after about 20 years.
Serial bomb blasts ripped various parts of Coimbatore on February 14, 1998, killing 58 people and leaving over 250 injured. The case was handed over to the SID that arrested 168 persons and launched a hunt for five more accused - Sadiq alias Tailor Raja alias Valantha Raja, Mujibur Rahman alias Mujibur, Noohu and two others.
An investigating official said on coming to know that the police were searching for him, Noohu escaped to Qatar using his passport. “He settled there after a marrying a Qatar woman and did not return. He was working there as sales staff in an electronics company,” he said.
When he returned to Kerala on Monday, the SID sleuths arrested him. He is facing charges under sections
120 B, 302, 307, 449, 465, 468, 471, 212, 153 A, 148, 149, 201, 109, 114, 353 of Indian Penal Code (IPC) Sections 3, 4 (b) and 6 of the
Explosive Substances Act, 1908, section 25 (1-B) (a) of the Arms Act, 1959 and section 4 of the Tamil Nadu Public Property (Prevention of Damage and Loss) Act, 1992.
Noohu had been produced before the Coimbatore Judicial Magistrate on Tuesday and was remanded to judicial custody. “A custodial interrogation will help reveal more details,” the official added.