Police probe Kolkata link to Mumbai blasts

Mumbai: As the probe into Wednesday’s serial blasts in Mumbai gathers steam, a Kolkata link to the terror attack has emerged.

Reports said on Saturday that the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) is looking into the possible involvement of an Indian Mujahideen (IM) operative, Abdullah alias Nata, in the terror strikes.

Officials of the Maharashtra ATS have got in touch with the Kolkata Special Task Force (STF) and have sought details of Railway passengers who travelled on the Kolkata-Mumbai and Kolkata-Kanpur route eight days before the blasts.

It is believed that Abdullah had gone into hiding from his Kolkata home at Mafidul Islam Lane in Beniapukur, in the days leading up to the recent Mumbai terror attack.

A leading newspaper on Saturday reported sources as saying that in February this year, intelligence agencies intercepted phone calls made between West Bengal and Karachi, and Sharjah and Andhra Pradesh. The intercepts helped police find out IM’s latest move: recruitment of fresh faces from Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal.

Abdullah is believed to be a close aide of IM co-founder Amir Raza. Raza has been on the run since the arrest of IM operatives in 2008.

The Maharashtra ATS are also looking into the possible involvement of IM`s Azamgarh module in the blasts. ATS officials have already discussed the same with a visiting Uttar Pradesh STF team.

Further, a team of the National Investigating Agency (NIA) is in Ahmedabad to question an IM operative Danish, who is in the custody of the Ahmedabad police in connection with the 2008 blasts.

Apart from probing IM, the police are not ruling out the involvement of either the underworld or the Bangladesh-based HuJI.

So, far the Mumbai Police have interrogated more than 100 people, including former SIMI activists and aides of arrested or wanted IM suspects.

Six SIMI activists have also been picked up from Madhya Pradesh for questioning.

Also, over 100 phone numbers have been put under surveillance as part of the probe into the blasts that killed 19 people and injured over 100.