Mirza Himayat Inayat Baig,the only accused arrested so far in the German Bakery blast case,was Saturday identified in court by an autorickshaw driver,who claimed to have driven him.
The driver,whose name was not revealed said he drove Baig along with another absconding accused,who was videoed by the bakerys CCTV and who investigators believe is Yasin Bhatkal alias Ahmed Siddibappa,who allegedly planted the bomb on February 13,2010.
The driver,who was called as a witness,in the court of Additional Sessions Judge N P Dhote,claimed he was waiting for passengers outside the Pune railway station around 4 pm on February 13,2010.
Two boys between 28 and 31 years of age came and asked me to drop them at Rajneesh Ashram. I started driving towards Koregaon Park and when I was about to take a right turn for Koregaon,they asked me to go to Bundgarden. They then stopped me near Pune Central Mall. I told them Koregaon Park was still ahead but they alighted. One of them was a tall and fair boy wearing a cap and carrying two sacks. Both of them stood near the mall. I got another passenger and left, the driver told the court.
He claimed he saw a photo of the tall and fair boy wearing a cap in a Marathi newspaper on May 25,2010 – the paper said he had been arrested – and approached the police. I recollected that he was the same tall and fair boy who was carrying two sacks whom I had dropped near Pune Central Mall on February 13. I got scared and was thinking whether I should approach the police to tell them I had ferried the said person in my autorickshaw. After thinking for two days,I approached the ATS office in Shivajinagar and told them about the incident, he said.
The rickshaw driver was then summoned for an identification parade on October 3,2010 at Yerawada Central Jail,where he identified Baig.
In its chargesheet,the police had said Siddibappa and Baig travelled from Poolgate bus stand to Pune station in a rickshaw and to Central Mall in a different rickshaw. Siddibappa proceeded to the bakery around 5 pm and planted the bomb which exploded at 6.50 pm,killing 17 persons and seriously injuring 56.
Meanwhile,another witness who took computer classes for schoolchildren in Nanded told the court Hasan Sir alias Baig had agreed to teach his class.