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Modasa blast suspect ‘picked up’,let off

Gujarat’s Anti-Terrorism Squad that “picked up” a Modasa blast suspect at Banka recently let off the accused after asking...

Written by Santosh Singh | Patna | Published: January 13, 2009 12:25:17 am

Gujarat’s Anti-Terrorism Squad that “picked up” a Modasa blast suspect at Banka recently let off the accused after asking him to appear before Himmatnagar police in Gujarat on January 13. The police at Banka,which assisted the ATS team in tracking down Allarakha alias Maulana Mustafa (35) at Shambhuganj’s Chutia-Bellari village on Wednesday,is puzzled at the Gujarat team not having arrested Mustafa.

Highly placed sources in Gujarat ATS told The Indian Express that Mustafa is suspected of having arranged the motorcycle which was used in the Modasa blast on September 29. Mustafa’s name,said sources,cropped up during ATS investigations into the case. A two-member team of the Gujarat Police,headed by Assistant Superintendent of Police (Himmatnagar) Himanshu Shukla was sent to track Mustafa,who until a week ago,was suspected to have fled. Shukla,along with an official of Gujarat ATS,questioned Mustafa for two days. “Nothing substantial was found and we had no grounds to arrest him,” the source added.

Sources in Gujarat ATS said Mustafa used to teach at Darul-Ulum-Hassania Madrasa in Himmatnagar for the past several years and had gone to his native village after the Modasa blast. “We have asked him to appear before Himmatnagar police by Tuesday,” an ATS officer said.

Banka SP Jitendra Rana said,“The man we picked up matched the profile given to us by the ATS. We cannot comment on why the ATS did not take him along for interrogation.” Asked if the police at Banka had been requested to “keep track of Mustafa’s activities here,” he said,“We have no word from the ATS.”

Mustafa had been living for last three months at his native Chutia-Bellari village,280 km from Patna. He had come to his village on October 1,two days after the Modasa blast. His father,a farmer,stays with his family at the village.

(With inputs from ENS Ahmedabad)

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