A probe into an incident of snatching led the investigating officers of the Kolkata Police to a house on Manashatala Row at Kidderpore where bombs were being manufactured in the wee hours on Monday. An accused identified as Sonu was arrested but some of his close aides and his wife, who is also suspected to be a member of the gang, had managed to flee.
A senior police officer said that some unidentified miscreants had snatched a bag containing Rs 8 lakh cash from a businessman at Taratala on Sunday evening. The miscreants, however, had to leave their motorbike as local people chased them hearing the businessman’s cry for help.
Police had identified the owner of the motorbike with the help of its registration number and arrested four people late on Monday night in connection with the incident. The four accused have been identified as Md Halim, Khurshid Alam alias Raj, Md Azgar and Shamim Khan alias Chikna.
The accused have revealed the name of the kingpin of their gang during the interrogation. Police had initiated a search for the kingpin Balu. The arrested persons informed the police that Balu was a resident of Barister Lane at Kidderpore. Police had conducted a raid in the house of Balu, but he was absconding. From there, the police had got the address of Balu’s brother Sonu.
Policemen from Watgunge police station conducted a raid at Sonu’s residence on Manashatala Row. Finding the police entering the house, Sonu’s associates and his wife had managed to flee leaving him behind.
Additional policemen from Taratala police station were sent after bombs, explosive items, mobile phone circuits, cell phone chips, remote controls and many SIM cards were recovered. Police have initially thought that they were making Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). But later investigation revealed that they were making bombs for the purpose of robbery. Police also came to know from local people that door of the house always used to remain close and many people used to visit the house after midnight.
A team of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) had visited Watgunge police station and interrogated Sonu. But they didn’t find any clue that establishes that they were preparing bombs to carry out any anti-national activities. The house was sealed and policemen were posted outside the house. Police initiated a search operation for other members of the gang.