KOLKATA: The confrontation between the Centre and the state’s TMC-led Government over the NIA probe into the explosion at Bardhaman showed no sign of easing, with the TMC on Tuesday vehemently opposing it even as the other Central intelligence agencies stepped in because of its terrorist angle.
TMC Rajya Sabha MP and spokesman Derek O’Brien said, “An NIA probe will affect the federal structure of the country. It’s only 100 hours (after the incident) and the state administration is investigating the case,” he said.
“The NIA didn’t drop from the sky and there is a due process for the NIA to take over the case. Can the NIA solve all the bomb blasts in the country?,” he asked. Meanwhile, senior bureaucrats and police officials held a meeting at the State Secretariat here. DGP G M P Reddy informed that a report would be sent to the Ministry of Home Affairs. The state government, in its earlier report, admitted that Shakil Ahmed, a terrorist from Dhaka, had illegally crossed over into Nadia district in order to carry out subversive activities. Shakil was killed in an explosion in a house while manufacturing grenades and rocket launchers on October 2.
However, the Central agencies probing the explosion specifically mentioned the role of banned SIMI in the blast. They said Shakil had been in West Bengal for several years. He was married to a local woman, Raziya Bibi and had been running terror camps in the state.
Though the state government was opposed to NIA officials visiting the blast site and interrogating Raziya and Amina Bibi, now in state police custody, officers of the other Central intelligence agencies, including the RAW, visited Bardhaman since terror outfits from Bangladesh, mainly the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen are involved.
The state CID raided two places at Mangalkote in search of Mohammad Kauser, the linkman between SIMI and Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen. During the raids, the police found a huge hall where teenaged Muslim girls were allegedly imparted training on terrorist activities. However, after the explosion on October 2 at Khagragrh, the girls had fled, sources said.
Meanwhile, the Opposition parties reiterated their demand for an NIA probe into the blast. And they also accused the TMC of trying to destroy evidence and hush up the role of SIMI in the explosion. According to the Opposition, the ruling party leaders had links with terrorist organisations in Bangladesh. CPM MP Mohammad Salim said, “The TMC is scared as its leaders’ links with Bangla terror outfits has been proved beyond doubt and they had passed Saradha funds to them. It’s a quid pro quo between them,” he alleged.
West Bengal BJP president Rahul Sinha alleged that the TMC was “shielding anti-nationals”. “Why is the state government opposing the NIA probe? The TMC is admitting that terrorists from Bangladesh are involved. So it is a perfect case for investigation by the agency which is specialised in it,” he said.