Two alleged terror operatives gunned down by police in an encounter in Nalgonda district of Telangana on Saturday were suspected to be prime suspects in the bomb blast of July 10, 2014 in the parking lot of Faraskhana and Vishrambag police stations, adjacent to the Dagdusheth Halwai Ganesh temple.
Police did not reveal the identity of the two. But investigators suspect they were operatives of the banned Islamic Movement of India (SIMI), who had fled from Khandwa jail in Madhya Pradesh in October 2013.
Six suspects, Aizazuddin alias Aizaz Mohammed Azizuddin of Narsinghpur, Mumbai and Aslam Ayub Khan, Mehboob alias Guddu Ismail Khan, Amzad Ramzan Khan, Zakir Hussain alias Sadiq Badrul Hussain and Abu Faisal alias Doctor of Khandwa, Madhya Pradesh were allegedly involved in the Khandwa jailbreak.
Faisal was arrested in December 2013. Cops suspect that the two suspects gunned down in Nalgonda could be Zakir and Aslam. The other three are still on the run.
Senior police inspector Bhanupratap Barge of Pune ATS said, “The suspects in Khandwa jailbreak are among prime suspects in the Faraskhana bomb blast case. We are verifying details of the two terror operatives killed in the Nalgonda encounter. We have dispatched a team to Telangana for investigation.”
An improvised explosive device (IED) planted on a motorcycle at the parking lot of Faraskhana and Vishrambad police stations exploded around 2 pm on July 10, 2014. The blast injured five persons. The probe revealed that the motorcycle used in the blast was stolen from a court in Satara district on June 25. It belonged to a cop, Dada Rajge, attached to Satara police.
ATS checked CCTV footage around the blast site. ATS sleuths identified three persons from CCTV footage as suspects. The CCTV images matched those who had fled from Khandwa jail. ATS teams conducted searches across different states. A Pune ATS team has rushed to Telangana and hopes to get details about the Faraskhana blast conspiracy.
The suspects were also seen on CCTV footage scanned following an explosion in a house in Bijnor, UP in September 2014. Investigators said the “SIMI group” was assembling a bomb in a house, where they were living as tenants, when it exploded. Police got to know from neighbours that suspect Mehboob alias Guddu sustained serious injuries.
Police recovered fake voter ID cards, a stock of matchsticks, explosive material, half assembled bomb, an L-joint of plumbing pipes, a 0.32 bore pistol, a laptop, Urdu books and other items from Bijnor house. Police suspect they were trying to assemble the bomb and that a similar explosive material was used for the Faraskhana parking lot blast.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines