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'Secret operation led to IM chief Bhatkal's arrest'

Patna, Aug 29, 2013, (IANS): 14:12 IST
A member of bomb disposal squad diffuses a bomb near the main gate of Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore on April 18, 2010. Photo: PTI
The operation to arrest Indian Mujahideen chief Yasin Bhatkal was so secret that even after his arrest only few top Bihar Police officers were informed and they too were not told about where he was being held for questioning, an officer said.

Bihar Police played a major role in the arrest of Yasin Bhatkal, who is wanted in bomb blasts across the country, Bihar Police chief Abhayanand said here Thursday.

"It was Bihar Police that mainly helped NIA (National Investigation Agency) and other government agencies to arrest Bhatkal," Abhyanand told mediapersons here.

Bhatkal was arrested from the India-Nepal border Wednesday night and is in the custody of the Bihar Police.

"A team of Bihar Police officials have interrogated Bhatkal at a secret place after he was arrested," he said.

East Champaran district Superintendent of Police Vinay Kumar said that Bhatkal would be brought to Motihari from Raxaul under tight security before being taken to Delhi.

According to a senior officer at the Police Headquarters here, the entire operation to arrest Bhatkal was kept a close secret till the last moment.

"A few selected police officers were aware of the special operation to arrest Bhatkal," the officer said.

An additional director general of police rank officer told IANS on condition of anonymity that even after Bhatkal was arrested, only few top officers were informed and they were also not told about where he was kept for interrogation.

"It was a very sensitive case, so information was not shared with others except those involved in this operation," he said.

The state government has sounded an alert across Bihar, particularly in the border districts following Bhatkal's arrest.

"We have alerted district police officials and asked them to keep a close watch...," an official of the state home department said.

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