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Finally, police confirm terror suspect Bilal's death

Mohammed Siddique in Hyderabad
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July 25, 2008 19:40 IST

The Hyderabad police have finally confirmed that one of the most-wanted terrorist and a key operative of Pakistan and Bangladesh-based militant organisations Abdul Shahed alias Bilal had died last year.

City police commissioner B Prasad Rao said the police confirmed the death on the basis of news reaching the family from different sources.

"The family knows about Shahed's death and we learnt about it from Muqeemuddin Yasser," he said.

Yasser, son of an imprisoned religious scholar Moulana Naseeruddin was arrested last week by the police in connection with a criminal conspiracy case.

Shahed, whose name figures in several terrorist acts in Hyderabad and has been absconding for the last five years, is a resident of Hyderabad. He is the son of a retired teacher Abdul Wahed.

Shahed's death was reported by the media in August last year with in days of twin blasts in Hyderabad in which the police had suspected his hand.

Reports said that Shahed, along with another person, was killed by unidentified men at Gulbarg Chowrangi on August 30. The Pakistani media reports said that he was targeted when he was going on a motor cycle. The other person was suspected to be his brother Abdul Samad..

Now, it is confirmed that along with Shahed, Samad also died.

"Family members also say that Shahed was dead. They knew he was abroad and he never got in touch with them after the last year's blasts", he said.

"Yasser told us that Shahed's family knows about the death of their two sons," he said.

Shahed's father Abdul Wahed denied the knowledge of any such incident and said that the local police had not informed them about it. The Indian intelligence agencies had also shown reluctance to confirm the report suspecting that it could be a ploy of ISI to put them on a wrong track.

"But the family is now convinced that Shahed is no more because ever since the reported incident he has never got in touch with the family and the family also knew that he was abroad", the police commissioner said.

While no family member was available for comments, sources close to the family said the information of Shahed's death was correct.

"The family has learnt from his friends in Saudi Arabia that Shahed was killed," the sources said.

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