BHUBANESWAR: With a day to go before his remand with Government Railway Police (GRP) ends, Ramachandran Subash, the lone accused in the Puri train coaches burning case, was subjected to polygraph test at State Forensic Science Laboratory (SFSL) here on Monday. The test continued for more than four hours.
Although the investigators of National Investigation Agency (NIA) and Intelligence Wing of the State Police have reached a stage from where the former could take the probe forward, the polygraph test was necessary to validate the information elicited from Subash about the motive behind the arson, his links with a group indulging in subversive activities in the country and his associates. He is reported to have confirmed that he can recognise his associates but possesses no address details. During interrogation, investigators had elicited over a dozen telephone numbers from the accused. When his call details were extracted, he was found to have contacted those numbers frequently which strengthened their suspicion about his links with a set of people on the pay rolls of a group stated to be behind the series of incidents.
The five-member NIA team and senior officers of Intelligence Wing have found out that Subash had been contacted by the group in Mumbai. Since he wanted to make more money, he was lured into carrying out such acts for financial gain.
Probe also revealed that he was paid in thousands - the money was handed over in cash and not sent to his account - for carrying out the arson across several places. The group apparently wanted to assess Subash’s capability to translate words into action which is why he was asked to conduct the ‘dry runs’. The train coaches burning in Gaya, Haridwar, Kharagpur, Bhubaneswar and finally at Puri were part of the trials but Subash is alleged to have torched a couple of godowns too.
The accused, sources said, worked for a hotel but had claimed before his lady love that he was a mechanical engineer. He was in constant lookout for opportunity to make more money to elevate his social status and that’s when he was lured by the group whose whereabouts are being probed. Subash had also visited Mumbai several times with his girlfriend and the investigators have established the facts by verifying the same with the woman.
However, his two associates, who are believed to be operatives of the group, are on the radar of the NIA. Once Subash’s remand ends and he is produced before a Puri court, the national agency will take him on transit remand to Delhi. The NIA is also likely to revisit all the places with the accused to ascertain how he planned and executed the spate of incidents.