Varanasi on target: Taliban-trained `human bombs` arrested in UP
Zee Media Bureau
Lucknow: In a major breakthrough, the Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terror Squad on Wednesday night arrested two suspected suicide bombers planning to launch suicide attacks during Bharatiya Janata Party prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi`s rally.
The suspected terrorists were arrested near the railway station in Gorakhpur city of Uttar Pradesh.
Reports suggest that the ATS officials recovered 1 AK-47, a number of pistols, and live cartridges from them.
The suspects were part of a terror module which was planning to target senior political leaders, including BJP`s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, during campaigning for the Lok Sabha polls, informed sources told a news agency.
Reports also claimed that the men were trained by Taliban.
Both the men, identified as Barkat and Muzammil, are said to be Pakistani nationals, and were taken to the Lucknow headquarters of the Anti-Terror Squad for further questioning.
Officials while refusing to comment on specific leads in the case confirmed that the two were "directed" to target prominent leaders as "human bombs" during election rallies.
"We were given some leads by the Crime Branch of the Delhi Police after the arrest of Indian Mujahideen terrorist Tehsin Akhtar, and the arrests in Gorakhpur are a fall out of this tip off," an official told a news agency.
Inspector General (ATS) Rajeev Sabharwal confirmed the arrest, but refused to divulge any further details.
Both the suspects are natives of Multan in Pakistan.
The arrest comes after the Delhi Police virtually broke the back of terror outfit Indian Mujahideen with the arrest of its chief of Indian operations Tehsin Akhtar alias Monu, who was wanted in a number of bombings across the country, from near Kakarvitta on the Nepal border on Tuesday by Delhi Police.
Reports on Wednesday suggested that the Indian Mujahideen was planning to strike at three tourist destinations in the country during the Lok Sabha polls and had deputed its now arrested Indian operations head Tehsin Akhtar to recce these locations.
Akhtar has told the Delhi Police during interrogation that he along with his associate operatives was planning to target the tourist places to avenge the 2009 Gopalgarh mosque firing in Rajasthan in which 10 people from the Meo Muslim community were killed, Srivastava said.
He was in Jodhpur when Indian Mujahideen co-founder Yasin Bhatkal and his associate Asadullah Akhtar alias Haddi were arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in August 2013.
(With Agency inputs)
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