CBI looks into link of Ajmer suspects with Masjid blast

With the Anti Terrorist Squad of Rajasthan Police making a possible breakthrough in Ajmer blast, the CBI has joined the probe to ascertain role of arrested persons with the 2007 Mecca Masjid terror strike in Hyderabad.

Last Updated: May 02, 2010, 20:06 PM IST

New Delhi: With the Anti Terrorist Squad of
Rajasthan Police making a possible breakthrough in Ajmer
blast, the CBI has joined the probe to ascertain role of
arrested persons with the 2007 Mecca Masjid terror strike in
Hyderabad.

Official sources said a joint team of ATS, CBI and
central security agencies were questioning two of three
arrested persons -- Davindra Gupta and Chandrashekar -- in
connection with their possible involvement in the Mecca Masjid
blast.

The role of the duo was purchasing of SIM cards and timer
devices which were used to trigger the blast in Ajmer on
October 12, 2007.

Two pilgrims were killed and nine others, including a
child, were injured in the terror attack when a crude bomb
went off at the sufi shrine of Khawaja Moinuddhin Chishti in
Ajmer where thousands of devout had gathered to break their
day-long Ramzan fast.

The low-intensity improvised bomb which was kept close
to Aasthan-e-Noor went off a minute after the period of fast
ended, indicating the similarity of execution timing with the
Malegaon and Mecca Masjid blast.

The probe had suggested that modus operandi, nature of
explosives and the kind of bomb used in the Ajmer blast
resemble Mecca Masjid blast in Hyderabad, the probe of which
is being done by CBI.

The low-intensity improvised bomb which was kept in a tin
box, with a packing of iron pipes, in Ajmer was similar to the
contraption used in the Mecca blast, the sources said.

CBI was refraining to comment on the issue officially,
but the sources said a team had moved in to question the duo
and their links with some of the accused identified by the
agency in connection with the Mecca blasts.

Five persons died in the blast and nine in the subsequent
police firing outside the mosque on Friday when thousands of
Muslims gathered for prayers on May 18, 2007.

Rajasthan ATS had been working on the links of Abhinav
Bharat, an extremist group which is alleged to be behind
Malegaon blasts.

A team of the state police had recently visited Mumbai
to collect full statements and reports of narco-analysis and
brain mapping tests done on Lt Col S P Purohit and other
accused in the Malegaon blast cases, the sources said.

Purohit, an alleged mastermind of the Abhinav Bharat
group had told investigators during narco-analysis and brain
mapping tests that another member Dayanand Pandey, also an
accused in the Malegaon blast, had planned the Ajmer attack,
they claimed.

The team which met officials of ATS Mumbai collected
call details of Purohit, his detailed interrogation report
besides other documents pertaining to investigations in the
Malegaon blasts after which surveillance was mounted on Gupta,
the sources said.

The Abhinav Bharat group came into picture during the
investigations of the Malegaon blast. The ATS probe headed by
its former chief Hemant Karkare, who was killed during the
Mumbai attack, had brought out alleged role of the group
members in the planning and execution of the blast.

PTI