Initial leads point to IM; two held from Ranchi

Initial leads point to IM; two held from Ranchi

Even as the needle of suspicion for Sunday’s serial blasts in Patna pointed towards terror outfit Indian Mujahideen (IM), a special team of Bihar and Jharkhand police, NIA and the intelligence sleuths arrested two persons, including a sleeper cell, Imtiaz, and recovered 2.5 kg of explosives in a pressure cooker from Dhurva in Ranchi on Sunday night.

The Patna blasts bore a similar pattern to that of Bodh Gaya, where the explosions were triggered by analogue timer clocks.

Altogether seven blasts occurred on Sunday one after the other while four unexploded bombs were recovered and defused by the bomb squad near Gandhi Maidan in Patna.

“We have arrested two persons, who are believed to be associates of IM module Tehsin, a close aide of Yasin Bhatkal. Besides, we have seized explosives (ammonium nitrate) from their rented house in Dhurva,” informed a source.

Tehsin, alias Hasan, alias Monu, is said to be the main bomb-maker and planter groomed by IM.

The 20-year-old Tehsin is originally a native of Samastipur in Bihar and was involved in the Hyderabad blasts case, besides carrying out terror attacks in New Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore.

The NIA has also been looking for Tehsin, who is suspected to be involved in Bodh Gaya serial blasts too.

During the interrogation of Bhatkal and his aide Assadullah Akhtar, alias Haddi, the NIA had shown them the video footage of the CCTV installed at Mahabodhi Temple. Though the footage was a bit blurred, the two outlaws had recognised a tall man as Tehsin.

The police reportedly got the lead on Sunday when the arrested person, Imtiaz, told his interrogators about Tehsin’s involvement in Patna blasts. “We have sealed the Indo-Nepal border so that he could not escape,” said the source and added that the person who died in bomb explosion at Patna junction on Sunday morning was actually an IM module. “While planting bombs, he erred and died in the blast. Had they succeeded in their original design, the death toll could have been more,” said the police source.

Teams reach Patna

Soon after the explosions, teams of NIA and NSG were rushed to Patna from Delhi. Minister of State for Home R P N Singh said the Centre is monitoring the situation and have offered Bihar all necessary assistance.

Earlier, sources said the Centre is collecting details about the nature of the bombs, suspected persons or organisations. They said the report from the state as well as NIA and NSG would provide a better picture.

“I can’t say whether it was a terror attack or a political conspiracy. Only after the investigation will we be able to tell anything,” Singh said earlier in the day.

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