Posted by: informer | November 20, 2008

ATS retracted RDX claim under pressure

MUMBAI: It was pressure from an embarrassed Centre which forced the ATS to go back on its charge that 60 kg of RDX allegedly pilfered by Lt Col Prasad Purohit was used in the Samjhauta Express blast last year. Even though the ATS’ public prosecutor Ajay Misar had told the Nashik court on Saturday that the RDX allegedly stolen by Lt Col Prasad was used in the Samjhauta blast, on Sunday the ATS claimed that he has been misquoted by the media.

Soon after Misar made the sensational charge in Nashik, the intelligence bureau (IB), which is keeping a close tab on the probe, alerted the Centre about the implications of Misar’s statement. When the train blast took place, the Centre had blamed Pakistan’s ISI for the terror strike on the basis of the bureau’s findings.

“But the ATS’ charge on Friday would have seriously impaired the Centre’s credibility internationally. The central government has been informing its counterparts in the US and other countries about the role of the ISI and here the ATS was claiming that the blast was the handiwork of a serving Indian Army officer. Forensic examination of the blast site and two unexploded bombs had conclusively proved that RDX was not used, but the ATS was levelling an allegation to the contrary,” a senior bureau official observed.

Meanwhile, the Centre is believed to have commended the Mumbai crime branch’s investigation of the Indian Mujahideen’s role in the Ahmedabad, Delhi and Mumbai 7/11 blasts.

Crime branch sleuths had arrested 20 persons and got their confessions about their alleged role in various blasts. Then human right activists, minority leaders et al were allowed to meet the accused persons without police presence and make inquiries. All those who met the accused came out with the unanimous conclusion that the accused persons were not tortured and had voluntarily confessed to their role in 7/11 and other blasts.

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