Madani arrested before surrender, taken to Bangalore
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Last Updated: Tuesday, August 17, 2010, 18:03
  
Kollam (Kerala): Ending the eight-day long suspense, PDP leader Abdul Nasser Madani was Tuesday arrested amid high drama from his camp here by the Karnataka Police in connection with the 2008 Bangalore blast case.

Hours before the deadline set by the Bangalore court was to expire, a Karnataka Police team executed the non-bailable arrest warrant as Madani emerged from his orphanage-cum-madrassa complex at Anwarassery here.

Bangalore Deputy Commissioner of Police Omkarayya executed the warrant against Madani with the support of Kerala Police shortly after the PDP leader said he would be surrendering in a local magistrate court.

As Madani came out in a vehicle from his camp after mid-day prayers, a heavy contingent of Kerala Police in riot gear blocked the vehicle to facilitate the Karnataka officials to effect the arrest.

The police then took charge of the vehicle allowing only Madani's wife Soofiya and a personal aide to remain with the PDP leader.

Kollam SP Harshita Attalluri, who was leading the Kerala Police team, told reporters gathered in large numbers at the spot that Madani had been arrested by Karnataka Police.

The entire exercise took place without any immediate law and order problem except some slogan shouting by supporters hailing their leader and women and inmates of the orphanage weeping.

Madani was taken to Thiruvananthapuram en route to Bangalore by air so that he could be produced before the Metropolitan Magistrate there this evening itself.

Madani was listed as the 31st accused in an additional chargesheet filed by the police last month after confessions by suspected Lashkar-e-Toiba operative T Nazir linking him to the Bangalore blasts that left one person dead and 20 others injured.

A Karnataka Police team has been camping here for the last eight days waiting for the nod from the local police for the arrest of Madani, whose anticipatory bail plea was rejected by the Karnataka High Court on August 3.

Madani had earlier in the day told reporters that he would surrender before a local court this afternoon after mid-day prayers with the orphanage inmates.

Maintaining that he was falsely implicated in the case as part of "a deep-rooted conspiracy", Madani said he wanted to surrender as he had faith in the judiciary and also he could record whatever he wanted to say in the court.

Madani has moved the Supreme Court seeking a stay on his arrest in the case.

The PDP leader was also an accused in the 1998 Coimbatore serial bomb blast case in which 58 people were killed and over 200 injured hours before an election meeting to be addressed by senior BJP leader L K Advani. He was acquitted later by the trial court.

Two police officers from Bangalore had come to Kerala a week ago with the warrant, after the PDP leader's anticipatory plea was rejected by the Karnataka High Court.

Madani's Anwarassery camp has been witnessing high drama and suspense since last Saturday with the state police sending forces there creating the impression that the arrest was imminent.

But the matter dragged on in view of the security situation on the eve of the Independence Day and the then three-day visit of President Pratibha Patil to the state.

On Sunday, Madani himself stated at a press meet that he preferred to surrender in a court instead of arrest.

The issue gained momentum with two senior police officials from Karnataka arriving yesterday and making it clear that they could no longer wait indefinitely as they were bound to complete the legal process.

After a blame game between the two states, an understanding between Kerala and Karnataka on executing the warrant was reached last night leaving no other option for the PDP leader, who had raised the issue of his health.

PTI


First Published: Tuesday, August 17, 2010, 18:03


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