A startling disclosure by arrested Indian Mujahideen co-founder Yasin Bhatkal -- that his outfit carried out a reconnaissance of nearly a dozen spots in Mumbai in August -- has prompted Maharashtra police to beef up security.
A confidential report prepared by the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad, with its chief Rakesh Maria's signature, stated that members of the home-grown terror outfit have carried out reconnaissance of at least 11 possible targets, including four synagogues in the city, in early August.
The report was prepared after Bhatkal and his associate Asadullah Akhtar made these revelations during interrogation by security agencies.
The possible targets are Mumbai Police Commissionerate, Zaveri Bazaar, Kalbadevi/Mangaldas Market/Lohar chawl, Crawford Market, Mumbai Central Railway station, Mumbai Central Bus depot, Mumbadevi Mandir, Magen David Synagogue, located next to state ATS headquarters at Nagpada area, Magen Hassidim Synagogue in Agripada area, Shaare Rason synagogue in Dongri and Shaar Harahamim synagogue in Pydhonie.
Describing these locations as "vulnerable", the report read, "Interrogation of arrested accused Yasin Bhatkal and Asadullah Akhtar have revealed that Jewish and other locations in Mumbai were recced by their operatives in the first week of August, 2013. It is requested to ensure that no unidentified object is allowed to be placed in or around the potential targets apart from other professional steps to thwart any such terror attack in Mumbai and around."
In view of this, a thick security blanket has been thrown in and around these locations.
On August 29, Bhatkal, co-founder of banned terror outfit IM, was arrested from Indo-Nepal border along with key aide Asadulla Akhtar alias Haddi.
Image: Crawford market in Mumbai ' Photograph Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons