Another accused in American Centre terror attack arrested
Fourteen years after the terror attack in American centre in Kolkata, an accused involved in the incident was arrested from Aurangabad in Bihar on Sunday.
Police said that the accused Imam Hasan (45) was a member of “Asif Raza Commando Force (ARCF)” and had links with terror outfit Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HuJI) and he had supplied the motorbike that was used by the activists of the terror outfit to open fire killing six policemen outside American Centre at 6.30 am on January 22, 2002.
Hasan, who is the close aide of Aftab Ansari, and other accused, had fled soon after the incident. The police had later arrested Ansari and Jahid who was riding the motorbike, which was given by Hasan, was shot dead by the police at Hazaribagh in Jharkhand. But Sadaqat, who had opened fire while sitting pillion on the motorbike, is still at large.
Hasan was arrested by the officers of Gujarat Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS). Acting on a tip-off, the police had conducted a raid in a garment shop at Aurangabad in Bihar and arrested him.
Investigation had revealed that the attack was “to avenge the encounter of Asif Raza - founder member of Indian Mujahideen - by the Gujarat Police” in December 2001 in Bharuch district.
A police officer said that after hopping from one place to another to avoid arrest, Hasan had settled in Bihar where he had initiated a business of selling garments. He even owns a shop. But the police failed to arrest him as he had managed to change his name.
In 2000, Aftab Ansaroi had kidnapped two diamond traders from Gujarat and took a ransom of Rs 1.5 crore. Hasan’s name had also cropped up in connection to this incident and police came to know that he had direct involvement with the incident.
Thus, the Gujarat police initiated a search for Hasan and finally came to know that he was in Bihar. It led the ATS of Gujarat Police to Bihar and they arrested him.
He was taken to Gujarat for further interrogation. According to the sources in Kolkata Police Hasan will be brought to the city for interrogation in connection to the 2002’s terror attack at American Centre.
Police feel that he could give them some lead about Sadaqat, who is still absconding.