Indian Mujahideen emerges prime suspect in Pune blast

Maharashtra Home Minister RR Patil on Thursday said that ATS has identified the Pune blast suspects.

Zeenews Bureau

Mumbai: In a significant development, Maharashtra Home Minister RR Patil on Thursday said that two main suspects behind the German Bakery blast in Pune have been identified and will be booked soon.

The Home Minister made a statement in the Maharashtra State Assembly that the Pune German Bakery blast conspiracy was hatched by militant outfits Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT ) and the Indian Mujahideen (IM).

Patil said this while briefing the state assembly about the progress made so far in connection with the German bakery blast probe.

Patil also elaborated that the Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) of Maharashtra have obtained vital clues and the investigating officials have zeroed in on two main suspects..

He also assured the House that the two suspects have been identified and will be booked soon. Maharashtra Home Minister also assured that ATS will shortly reveal crucial information about the case after the two suspects are formally booked.

As per reports, the ATS has zeroed in on Yasin Bhatkal, who is believed to be a relative of Indian Mujahideen founder Riyaz Bhatkal. Yasin has been identified as one of the prime suspects and hails from Bhatkal village in Karnataka

However, in an unprecedented move, Patil for the first time claimed that retired Pakistani Army officers have played a vital role in terrorist attacks in Mumbai on November 26, 2008.

The statement from the Maharashtra Home Minister comes a day after ATS submitted its investigation report on the Pune blast to the state government claiming a big breakthrough in its ongoing probe in the Pune blast.

The report was submitted by the newly-appointed ATS chief Rakesh Maria to the Home Department and was then forwarded to the Centre, according to reports.

The filing of the report comes a fortnight after Mr. Maria took over as ATS chief replacing KP Raghuvanshi, who received flak from the Centre for divulging information prematurely to the media on terror cases.
On February 13, a blast ripped apart German Bakery, a popular joint for foreigners, near Osho Ashram in Pune killing 17 people and injuring several others.