The questioning of Syed Maqbool, an accused in the Hyderabad blasts case, has revealed his alleged links with a political party. Vicky Nanjappa reports
It takes an Indian Mujahideen bomb-making specialist 15 minutes to assemble a bomb, according to Syed Maqbool alias Zuber, an accused in the Hyderabad blasts case.
Zuber, who is being questioned by the National Investigating Agency, has revealed that the IM has 15 expert bomb makers, and each of them can assemble a bomb in less than 15 minutes.
Once the place to be attacked has been decided, a bombmaker is picked for the task. The material to make the explosive device is kept in a safe house where it is assembled just 15 minutes before a foot soldier arrives to collect it. The core team of bombmakers has been practicing this for over three years to ensure that there is no time lost before the bomb is planted.
Pandra minute ka kaam hai (it’s a 15 minute job) is how Maqbool described it to the NIA. He, however, said he was aware of where the material was sourced from for the Hyderabad blasts.
Pune serial blasts
Maqbool has been in prison for nearly two years for his role in the Pune serial blasts case. For the blasts in Pune, Maqbool had said, the material was procured locally three day before the attack. He told investigators it was not difficult to procure materials for the bomb, and at least three people were assigned to the job. ‘We were always told that the operation should be split up so that there is no doubt in the minds of the persons supplying us with the material. I trained under Azam Ghori, an IM operative from Nizamabad, and this was repeatedly told to me during my programme,’ Maqbool said during interrogations.
Hyderabad (Dilsukhnagar) blasts
Maqbool disclosed that 12 locations were recced for the Hyderabad blasts. ‘It was decided that we would not use locals for the attack. Some of the locals may have been tapped to provide shelter. I am not aware of who was used for the attack as I was in jail at that time,’ he told interrogators.
MIM or IMMM
While the NIA continues to find details about the modules that could have carried out the Hyderabad blasts, the police are more interested in the political affiliations of Maqbool. When the Delhi Police questioned him, he had said that he worked for a person from a local political party in Hyderabad.
The Hyderabad Police have been questioning several youngsters from the OldCity to find out about their affiliation with Maqbool.
Three such youngsters who were questioned told rediff.com on condition of anonymity that there were two straightforward questions that were asked before they were let off. Do you know Syed Maqbool? Was he associated with the MIM?
Some grassroot level workers of the MIM too were asked the same question.
Investigations into Maqbool’s affiliation to a political party have brought out conflicting versions. While some say he worked for the MIM at the local body level in Nanded, his original place of residence, others say he was associated with a small-time MIM worker in Hyderabad for whom he did odd jobs.
This may have been a ploy on his part to avoid the police heat, the Hyderabad police feel.
Another version the police have come upon is about Maqbool’s political affiliation with the MIM and his efforts in trying to revive an outfit called the IMMM (Indian Muslim Mohammadin Mujahidin).
This according to the police is a shadow outfit of the Indian Mujahideen. It was formed in 1999 under the pretext to further three social causes -- stop dowry system, fight corruption and stop distribution of pornographic films. However, two years back they wanted to revive the outfit and make it a shadow organisation for the IM, the police said.