Foreign help sought to enhance CCTV footages

Mumbai/Patna: Investigators were on Tuesday taking the help of a foreign firm to enhance the image of some crucial CCTV footages at the three sites of Mumbai serial blast and were keenly looking at the identity of one person, as they continued to struggle for a breakthrough.

Two suspected HUJI members arrested in Bihar were slapped with an FIR after they came under the scanner in the serial blasts probe while Maharashtra Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) intensified its nationwide hunt to get solid leads on the bombers five days after the terror attack.

The CID also began its inquiry into the death of Fiaz Usmani — the brother of an alleged Indian Mujahideen member — who passed away in a hospital yesterday following questioning by crime branch sleuths in connection with the blasts.

The controversy over Fiaz`s death has caused a setback to investigations into the blasts, a police officer said on condition of anonymity. His family cried foul and alleged torture but Mumbai police denied the charge.

Faiza`s death prima facie appeared due to natural causes, said Dr T P Lahane, Dean of Government-run J J hospital where the post mortem was performed.

In Mumbai, a police official said the volume of the CCTV footages, which are playing a crucial role in helping the investigators identify the sequence of events that led to the blasts, is huge and many of the scenes are not clear.

"There was a need to enhance the image. We are taking help of technical experts of a foreign-based firm for this job," a senior Mumbai police official said.

The investigators are also probing a particular person at one of the blast locations in the CCTV and through the enhanced image his face can be easily seen, the official added. The location was not revealed amid reports that it could be Opera House. 19 people were killed in the three blasts which also left 130 people injured.

In Bihar, Kishanganj Superintendent of Police R K Mishra said that an FIR was lodged against Md Riyazul Sarkar alias Akash Khan who was arrested on Saturday, besides Md Mahtab Alam, who was in the custody of the Pauakhali Police station in the district under Foreigners Act.