Pune blasts: 4 Kashmiri handicraft sellers arrested in Hampi
Posted by jagoindia on February 18, 2010
Pune link: 4 held in Hampi
Bellary, Feb. 17: Four Kashmiri men were taken into custody in Hampi on Wednesday in connection with Saturday’s terror attack on the German Bakery in Pune.
A police team from Pune, following specific clues in emails sent from IP addresses in Hampi, detained the four suspects who sources said sold artefacts at Virapura Gadde Island in the Tungabhadra river.
Investigating officials are looking for three other suspects in the heritage town that draws thousands of foreign tourists every year. In Virapura Gadde, where a franchise of the German Bakery is located and from where the emails were sent, seven Internet cafés were shut down since Tuesday evening.
Fearing for their safety, many foreign tourists staying in resorts on the island, a kilometre from Hampi by coracle, started moving to hotels in Hampi and Hospet after news spread of the suspects being taken into custody.
Investigators believe that a part of the Pune attack conspiracy could have been hatched in Hampi, sources said.
The Pune police team arrived in Hampi after carrying out investigations in Bhatkal in the Uttara Kannada district, the hometown of terror outfit Indian Mujahideen co-founder Riyaz Bhatkal.
The Kashmiri community in Hampi has been under the scanner earlier as well, with the Bengaluru police arresting a suspected Kashmiri terrorist, Imran Jalal, in Hampi in January 2007. Jalal established the now-defunct Kashmiri-Rajasthani Handicrafts Shop Owners’ Association that comprised over 35 Kashmiris.
Shivakumar G. Malagi
4 Kashmiris among 40 detained in Pune probe
TNN, Feb 18, 2010
BELLARY/BANGALORE: Four Kashmiri youths have been taken into custody in Hampi in connection with the February 13 explosion in Pune that left 11 persons dead. The detention was made by a team of the Maharashtra police near Virupapura Gaddi locality.
The Pune blast site was littered with handicrafts items, leading the Mumbai police to Hampi. The four Kashmiris are sellers of handicrafts. The police are looking for three other persons, according to sources.
Dozens of other detentions have been made in Bangalore, Mumbai and Pune on the basis of intelligence, call records and whatever ‘little information’ sleuths could glean from the CCTV footage containing images of activities on North Main Road, where the German Bakery’s entrance is located.
But superintendent of police Seemanth Kumar Singh denied the arrest of anybody in connection with the Pune blast. Another SP, Ishwarchandra Vidyasagar, told TOI no arrest or detentions had been made. “Neither we nor any other state police force has arrested or detained anyone.’’
The Maharashtra police team inspected various cyber cafes in Hampi, a popular haunt for foreign tourists. They questioned some foreigners, and enquired with the local police and hotel owners about people who had booked rooms for a week and left in a hurry. The police have visited some of the villages surrounding Hampi. More than 40 hotels catering to foreign tourists are located in Hampi.
Three years ago, a suspected terrorist, Bilal, from Kashmir, was arrested in Bangalore. An LeT operative, he had planned to attack the Bengaluru International Airport and Wipro and Infosys offices.