It was a high profile operation and the Indian Mujahideen had hatched a plan to bomb the Chinnaswamy cricket stadium in Bengaluru. Yasin Bhatkal was named as the prime accused in the chargesheet that was filed in the 2010 case.
If you want me to speak, then get me a masala dosa and a bowl of musk melon. Sounds funny, but this is exactly what Yasin Bhatkal kept demanding from the Bangalore police team every time he was about to be questioned about his role in the various incidents of terrorism that he was alleged to be involved in.
Without a doubt the Bangalore police which interrogated Yasin Bhatkal the Chief of the Indian Mujahideen had a torrid time in making him speak. Uncooperative, demanding and casual is what some would describe him as. He was in Bangalore for questioning for a couple of days before he was taken back to New Delhi. The Bangalore police sought to know a lot from him and interrogating him was even more important because he belongs to Karnataka and is said to have started his journey into the world of terror from here.
It is a huge co-incidence and one may recollect that the Indian Mujahideen orchestrated Chinnswamy blasts were also carried out on April 17th year 2010.
There were three timer bombs used in 2010 and today two devices were used. In that attack 15 persons were injured.
Police however term it as a coincidence and say that it may or may not be the same group. We will look into the angle as well, the police point out.
Preliminary investigations into the Bangalore blasts points towards a timer device that was used to trigger the blasts. The police also do not rule out the use of ancwhich could have been used in the bomb.
Although a lot of investigation is based on theory at the moment, the police say that taking into consideration the sheer intensity of the blast, it becomes evident that it was assembled by a professional and aimed at causing a huge impact.
The police have taken the hard disk attached to the Close Circuit Television on top of the BJP office which is hardly 100 meters from the blast site. There are traffic cameras as well which are being examined the police also add.
The questioning of suspected Indian Mujahideen operative, Fasih Mahmood is underway at Bangalore and the first round of interrogation details the logistic support he provided during the Chinnaswamy IPL blasts at Bangalore.
After a long fought battle, Fasih Mehmood has finally been deported to India and the Delhi police have taken him into their custody. India has been pushing for his deportation for the past six months, but it required a lot of coaxing before the Saudi Arabia authorities were convinced.
Fasih Mehmood aged 28 is an engineer and was working in Jubail before his name cropped up in cases related to terrorism. His name first cropped up during the investigation into the Chinnaswamy stadium blasts case in Bangalore and the police had said that he had a lot of information regarding the case. It was during the interrogation of Kafeel Akthar, an accused in the same case that his named had cropped up. The police said that there were call records to show that they were in touch with each other. Continue reading “What information can Fasih Mehmood provide?”
The probe being conducted by the Bangalore police in coordination with the special cell of the Delhi police has revealed that the team of ten persons from the HuJI and the Lashkar-e-Tayiba had split into two groups to carry out a series of operations in Karnataka.
A journalist from Bangalore and nine others have been picked up by the Bangalore police in connection with the Chinnaswamy blasts case. A special team from Delhi which is also here is coordinating with the Bangalore City Crime Branch which carried out the arrests late last night.
The journalist was one of the five picked up from Bangalore while others were brought down to the city from Hubli for questioning.
The police are tight lipped about the operation and say that the matter is at a very preliminary stage. Questioning is on and we are trying to ascertain each ones links, sources in the police said. The operation took place in the wake of more evidence that came up during the probe. The Delhi police too has been passing on information in this case since the modules which carried out the attacks in Delhi and Bangalore are the same.
Thank God for a sex worker or else the damage at the Chinnaswamy stadium at the hands of the Indian Mujahideen would have been a major disaster. In a revised chargesheet the Bangalore police has said that minutes before Mohammad Qateeel Siddiqui could plant the bomb at the Chinnaswamy stadium he came in contact with a sex worker who distracted him and in the bargain he connected the wires of the bomb wrong.
The police say that he was not sure whether to chase her or plant the bomb and in this state of confusion he wrongly connected the bomb to the timer.
Siddiqui was however picked up the police later and was sent to the Yerawada prison in Pune in connection with another case. He was however murdered recently in jail.
According to the Bangalore police, Siddiqui went to the Chinnaswamy stadium along with Yasin Bhatkal to plant the bomb. He there spotted a sex worker. He first thought of approaching her, but then decided that he would plant the bomb first and then chase her.
After planting the bomb Siddiqui went around the stadium looking for her. While the rest of the three pesons fled the scene, he decided to find her. He even took an auto and looked for her. However he joined the rest of his gang members an hour later.
This part of the interrogation was conducted by the Bangalore police when they had questioned him prior to his death. The Bangalore police say that he spoke honestly about everything and even told us the story of the sex worker.
The police say that he was unable to concentrate on the job assigned to him. The IM headed by Yasin Bhatkal wanted to kill over a 100 people and the key was with Siddiqui who planted the bomb at the main gate. This bomb however did not take off and failed completely. The bomb which was to be planted by him was to cause a major damage and had he connected it properly the damage would have been unimaginable, the police also added.
Fasih Mohammad is a name in circulation and in investigation circles he is considered to be a primary player for the Indian Mujahideen based out of Jubail in Saudi Arabia. The police say that he would be probed for his alleged role in the Chinnaswamy stadium blasts at Bangalore. However the more important aspect today is the whereabouts of this man who is an engineer by profession.
A fortnight ago it was reported that Mehmood was brought down to India in an undercover operation carried out by the Indian agencies. His family members too confirmed this fact that Mehmood was taken away by the Indian agencies. He is said to have been brought down to Delhi first and then questioned later by the Bangalore police for his role in the stadium blasts.
However since this incident none of the Indian agencies have confirmed this fact and say that the man in question is still at Jubail. There is information regarding his involvement in the blasts, but we are still working out the formalities for his deportation officially. The Intelligence Bureau says that a red corner alert will be issued in a couple of days and after this process is completed he would be deported to India with the help of the Saudi authorities.
Mehmood is an engineer working at Jubail. He is said to have been arrested first by the police of Saudi Arabia and then taken away by the Indian agencies. His name is said to have cropped up during the interrogation of Kafeel Akthar who is in the custody of the Bangalore police for his alleged role in the stadium blasts. The Bangalore police is however tight lipped regarding the exact conversation they had with Akthar, but sources say that the name of Mehmood came into the picture when they found his name and number stored in Akthar’s cell phone.
The preliminary investigations regarding Mehmood go on to show that he was part of this network and could have contributed in a small way towards the stadium blasts. The police are also probing his role for any financial transactions that could have possibly been made from the Gulf. Further the other point of suspicion arose when they realised that he had done his education in Bhatkal, a town in Karnataka which had once a upon a time housed the Bhatkals- Yasin, Riyaz and Iqbal.
The journey for his family has been a hard one. The day he was said to have been taken away by the Indian police, they also said that on the same day his wife too had been deported to India. His family members say that the government has a responsibility to inform them about his whereabouts. Some even suspect that from Saudi he was taken to Delhi and later to Bangalore.
The Jamia Teachers’ Solidarity Association which has been helping the family members in their fight to find Mehmood say that it has been over two weeks that Fasih Mahmood practically disappeared from his residence in Jubail, Saudi Arabia, where he worked as an engineer. On 13th May, Sunday, Mahmood was taken away by a group of Indian and Arab men, all in civil dress, and their house searched, while his wife, Nikhat Perveen, was held in a room by an Arab woman.
While his wife and family have received no official communication from the Indian government, speculation has been rife in the press that Mahmood has been arrested—a wholly wrong usage, as it can only be termed illegal detention—for being financier to the alleged terror plots of the shadowy organistaion, Indian Mujahideen. While pleas of Nikhat seeking the details of her husband’s whereabouts are falling on deaf ears, unnamed ‘sources’ are zealously leaking allegations against Mahmood to the press. So far, MHA, MEA and NHRC have all obstinately stonewalled Nikhat entreaties, feigning ignorance. The Home Secretary has refused to give any assurance to Nikhat that her husband would be produced; indeed, he claimed to have no information on him.
Fasih Mahmood’s illegal detention in an undisclosed location, possibly on foreign land, is in gross violation of all established legal procedures.
We demand that Fasih Mahmood must be immediately produced in an Indian court, and that the Indian government officially own up to this illegal ‘arrest’. Fasih Mahmood must be given immediate access to his family and lawyers.
The Indian establishment however are in denial regarding the arrest/detention of this man. We are following a proper procedure to ensure that he is brought down to India in order for us to probe his role in the stadium blasts. We have sufficient proof to seek the extradition of Mehmood and once he is brought down it would be made public, sources also point out.
Investigators say that he had visited India at the time of the attack. We need to question him to find out about his role and even ascertain whether he was involved or not. However the allegations by the family members that he is in our custody is wrong and time would tell the correct picture, the police also add.
Two days back an engineer from Dammam in Saudi was brought down to India on charges of terror. While his arrest is officially pending confirmation, sources say that this man who hails from Darabhanga in Bihar is being questioned in connection with certain terror incidents undertaken by the Indian Mujahideen in India.
Faseeh Mahmood an engineer from Dammam (Jubail) was arrested in Saudi Arabia and deported to India. A day after his deportation his wife too was deported to India.
Mahmood’s name is said to have sprung up during the interrogation of Kafeel Akthar who is currently in custody of the Bangalore police for his alleged role in the Chinnaswamy stadium blasts.
Police and intelliegence officials consider this to be an important break through and say that his name cropped up during the questioning of Akthar in connection with the stadium blasts.
Although none of the agencies would like to come to any definitive conclusion regarding Mahmood, police say that they would continue to look for more leads in this case.
However what some officials say that this arrest does prove that the the IM still relies heavily on its Gulf network to carry out operations. The questioning of many IM operatives specific to the Chinnaswamu blasts have told the police that all its funding comes through a network in the Gulf. Money continues to be wired in through networks such as hawala and the operatives do use it for their operations. In the recent few cases it has been found that the money was sent in from the Gulf and wired to an operator in Delhi who in turn passed on the money to Yasin Bhatkal. The hawala operative was paid Rs 1.50 lakh for this operation, investigators said.
A lot appears to be emerging from the investigations into the stadium blasts. It has had its roots not only in Bihar but has been linked to modules both in Bihar and Saudi Arabia. The interrogation of the recently arrested Kafeel Akthar has led the police to some operatives who had provided the logistic details for the blasts.
The police will now try and ascertain what link Akthar had with Mahmood. It is being said both hailed from the same place in Bihar. Another link which the agencies are trying to look into is whether Mahmood had any link with Yasin Bhatkal. It is said that he did his higher studies from a college in Bhatkal.
His family has however reacted sharply to the arrest and swear that he has no links with any terror group.