Bhatkal had escaped by bribing cop with `100!
Bhatkal has revealed to his interrogators in NIA that after he planted a pressure cooker bomb near Jama Masjid in 2010 he was intercepted by a Delhi police constable posted at Dost Chowki (police post) in the area. Even though Bhatkal was in possession of explosive substance, he managed to fox the constable saying that he works at a shop in Barsabula, a wholesale market for crackers. He even paid Rs 100 to the cop and managed to flee from the spot. He, however, doesn’t remember the name of the constable.
On 19 September, 2010, two Taiwanese tourists were injured in this attack when two men on a motorcycle fired several rounds on a tourist vehicle. About three hours later, an explosive-laden device planted (by Bhatkal) in a Maruti 800 car, parked near a transformer close to the mosque, was also found. The car had approximately 20 litres of fuel in its tank, which would have caused considerable damage if it had exploded but the bomb’s timers had failed and it did not go off.
NIA sources added Bhatkal has confessed to his involvement in the Jama Masjid shoot out case and has told the probe officials that he orchestrated the attack along with Assadullah Akhtar alias Haddi, arrested along with him from Nepal, and an absconding Pakistani national Waqas.
A NIA source said: ‘Bhatkal has told us that on that day he was the one who planted the bomb in the Maruti car. Waqas was riding pillion in the motorcycle driven by Haddi and fired from 9 mm pistol at two Taiwanese nationals.’
Bhatkal is notorious for giving cops a slip as he was arrested by West Bengal Police in December 2009 but passed himself off as a small time ‘fake currency’ supplier by giving his name as Bulla Mullick alias Sonu. For the next few weeks, he remained in a Kolkata jail but police had no clue about his real identify, nor did it try to contact any central intelligence agency.
Bhatkal was arrested on 20 August along with Haddi from Indio-Nepal border in a joint operation by NIA and Bihar police.
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