'Pune blast outcome of first joint terror attack of LeT & IM'



Mumbai: The German Bakery blast, the case in which the lone arrested accused Himayat Baig was held guilty today, is the outcome of the first ever terror attack in the country that was jointly executed by Pakistan-based LeT and homegrown outfit Indian Mujahideen, state ATS said on Monday.

"Indian Mujahideen (IM), which was busted in 2008, and Pakistan-based LeT had come together for the first time to execute German Bakery blast in Pune," Maharashtra ATS chief Rakesh Maria said.

"It is also a first verdict in which roles of both the terror outfits are proved. We are happy as Baig, the catalyst who brought both the terror groups together, was convicted by the court today," the top ATS officer said.

The IM has carried out several bomb blasts across the country in the past few years, but as of now only German Bakery blast's verdict has been delivered, while other cases are being tried in respective courts, Maria said.

According to ATS, IM's Yasin Bhatkal, Riyaz Bhatkal, Iqbal Bhatkal, Mohsin Choudhary and LeT's Faiyaz Kagzi and Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal are wanted in this case.

However, Jundal is currently behind bars in the 2008 Mumbai terror attack case, while the rest are still on the run and Red Corner Notices (RCN) have been issued against them. Jundal would be tried in German Bakery Blast separately.

"Process for attachment of properties of the accused against whom RCNs were issued is also underway," said Maria.

After the arrest of LeT operatives in the 2006 Aurangabad arms haul case and Maharashtra police's crackdown on IM in 2008, Baig planned to combine both groups to strengthen terror activities and ensure best use of available resources, Maria added.

After 2008, Baig, along with Kagzi and Zabiuddin came in close contact with three Bhatkals and chalked out strategies to carry out terror attacks together, police said.

Baig, the lone arrested accused in the German Bakery blast case, was today convicted by a sessions court for murder, conspiracy and other charges, more than three years after a powerful explosion rocked the popular eatery, killing 17 and wounding 64, in the first terror attack in Pune.

PTI