No breakthrough in Hyderabad mosque blast probe


Hyderabad : Two weeks after the bomb blast at the historic Mecca Masjid here, police have failed to achieve any breakthrough in the investigations even as Friday prayers passed off peacefully in the amid tight security.

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Special Investigation Cell, formed to probe the blast, has so far not found any clues, which could lead to the culprits. It picked up two members of Darasgah Jihad-o-Shadat, a local radical group, for questioning on Wednesday but could not make any progress.

One suspect Shoaib Jagirdar was arrested in Jalna in Maharashtra last week, yet the police did not find any evidence against him. He, however, was arrested under the Passport Act for attempting to secure a fake passport for a suspected terrorist.

For the second consecutive day, the mosque near the historic Charminar and surrounding commercial hub in the old city were turned into a fortress with massive deployment of police and paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and Rapid Action Force (RAF) personnel.

Though the prayers passed off peacefully Friday, alleged attempts by police to prevent youth from going to the mosque created mild tension and evoked sharp reaction from the Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi.

Owaisi, who is also a Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) leader, said: "Two weeks have passed since the bomb blast in the mosque and instead of identifying and catching the culprits, the police are creating tension."

The young MP alleged that police were helping the terrorists in their plans by stopping people from going to the mosque. "People are determined to foil the plans of terrorists by offering prayers but police are creating a curfew like situation," he said.

Though the state government on May 24 announced an inquiry by Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) into the blast and judicial probe into the police firing, both probes are yet to take off.

Nine people were killed and 30 others were injured in the bomb blast during prayers in the 17th century mosque on May 18. An hour later, five people were killed near the mosque when police opened fire to disperse the protestors.

Meanwhile, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has demanded release of people arrested for staging protests after the bomb blast.

A delegation of CPI-M leaders met state Home minister K. Jana Reddy and said it was surprising that the people who were protesting peacefully were arrested under serious charges like attempt to murder while the perpetrators of the bomb blast were still at large.

Police have arrested at least four youths for allegedly resorting to stone throwing after the blast.