Patna serial blasts: Indian Mujahideen’s involvement suspected

PATNA :  National Investigation Agency, probing yesterday’s serial blasts in Patna has come across some major clues that terrorist group Indian Mujahideen (IM) is suspected  to be involved, official sources said.

Six people were killed and more than 100 injured in seven low-intensity blasts that ripped off Patna, six of which exploded in and around the venue of BJP prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi’s Hunkar Rally at the Gandhi Maidan shortly before he was to address the huge gathering.

The NIA team, led by the IPS officer Vikas Vaibhav, interrogated an arrested youth till late last night.

During the interrogation, the youth, suspected to be associated with the IM, is learned to have doled out important information.

The NIA team inspected the blasts sites at the Gandhi Maidan and the Patna junction where the first blast took place.

Some of the bombs planted were in the form of improvised explosive device while some had timer and such devices were usually used by the IM, the sources said.

Following the information, the police were keeping hawk’s eye at some places. The security personnel, however, declined to disclose the details.

Soon after the first blast at Patna junction yesterday, the police had arrested a man — later to be identified as Imtiyaz Ansari — have reportedly disclosed the names of Tahsin Akhtar alias Monu of Darbhanga, wanted by the NIA and Waquas as masterminds of the blast.

Senior Superintendent of Police Manu Maharaj said today  that two people, including Ansari, suspected to be involved in  the blasts were arrested yesterday by the Patna police.

He, however, refused to disclose further details and name of the another arrested.

The security personnel found some papers from Ansari which carried some telephone numbers and some addresses which during investigation were found to be of Ranchi. The late night investigation also revealed that calls were made on those numbers of Ranchi soon after the serial blasts in Gandhi Maidain.

When the police contacted the numbers in Ranchi it came into light that several youths were involved in the blasts and arrived in Patna with the mission to trigger the blasts.

The NIA team air dashed here from New Delhi last night. A team of NIA which was investigating the July 7 serial blasts of Bodh Gaya is also assisting the investigation.

The pattern of the blasts that took place yesterday is similar to that of serial blasts of Bodh Gaya. Director General of Police Abhayanand had said that the blasts were of low intensity.

The NIA is interrogating Ansari who belonged to Ranchi.

The sources said Ansari revealed that bombs were planted in and around Gandhi Maidan barely an hour before the rally to avoid dew drops in the air at night or early morning did not render the explosives ineffective. The NIA is also verifying the names of some more suspects reportedly involved in planting bombs in Gandhi Maidan as revealed by Ansari .

After the arrest of Yasin Bhatakal, the head of the IM outfit, from Raxaul of Bihar in August this year, is now headed by Tehsin Akhtar alias Monu, who belongs to Bihar and is part of the infamous Darbhanga module of the outfit.

The NIA is looking for Tehsin who is wanted for several blasts including the 2011 Mumbai and 2013 Hyderabad blasts.

After analysing the pattern of the blasts, the sources said it appears that it was triggered to create stampede in the Hunkar rally.

(AGENCIES)

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