Police in India kill suspect in Mumbai bombings case

Deutsche Presse Agentur
Published: Tuesday August 22, 2006

New Delhi- Police in India killed a suspected Pakistani terrorist and arrested another in India's western Mumbai city Tuesday after claiming to have made a breakthrough in last month's bombings in the city that killed over 180 people, news reports and officials said. According to the Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS), the terror suspect, Mohammed Ali, alias Abu Osama, was killed in a gunbattle in the early hours of Tuesday in the city's Antop Hill.

Ali's associate, Riyaz Nawabuddin, another Pakistani national, tipped the ATS about the whereabouts of Ali after police arrested him on Monday night.

Police said that the suspected terrorist opened fire at the ATS team which had reached the scene and asked him to surrender. The ATS team fired in retaliation, killing Ali. An AK-47 rifle and a sizeable quantity of explosive RDX was also seized from the scene, police said.

Police cordoned off the area and bomb disposal teams as well as other police teams were conducting a search of the area. According to the NDTV, the Mumbai's Anti-terrorist squad has described this as a breakthrough in its fight against terrorism.

"There were just two people today, but there may be more involved. It's too early to speculate how many people were involved but we can consider it as a success for the ATS. We were working on specific intelligence inputs over the past few days," said K P S Raghuvanshi, the ATS chief, was quoted by NDTV as saying.

However, Raghuvanshi declined to categorically confirm whether the encounter was linked to the July 11 blasts in Mumbai. "More information will be given later in the afternoon. I cannot say anything more," he told reporters.

Indian security agencies suspect terror organization Lashkar-E-Toiba (Army of the Pure), which is allegedly based in Pakistan, to have carried out the carnage in Mumbai.

So far over a dozen people have been arrested in connection with the bombings which killed 186 people on Mumbai's trains. All the arrested are Indian Muslims. They include a journalist, a software professional and an alleged LeT commander.

Lashkar-e-Toiba is the largest terrorist group operating in Indian-administered Kashmir and is at the forefront of a separatist insurgency that has claimed more than 50,000 lives - civilians, militants and security forces - since the late 1980s.

© 2006 DPA - Deutsche Presse-Agenteur