AP, K’taka engulfed by terror networks

25 08 2008

Source: TOI

HYDERABAD: In what can only be described as an increasingly frustrating feeling, the Andhra Pradesh police has been able to establish that there is a clear link between the terror elements operating in neighbouring Karnataka and those active in Andhra Pradesh soil including Hyderabad, but has not been able to identify and destroy them.

Based on evidence gathered from the twin blasts in Hyderabad last year and on the interrogation of a few arrested persons in Karnataka, the state police conclusively believes that sleeper cells are present in the neighbouring state with elements from the state in active collusion. “The aim of these groups, whether Huji or LET or Simi, is clear. Bangalore and Hyderabad are being chosen as targets because by hitting them, a scare and panic can be conveyed to the US and the West as these two cities are housing those countries’ biggest IT operations,” said an official.

Raziuddin Nasir, a Hyderabad resident, and his accomplice Hafiz Khan Adnan hailing from Bangalore, were arrested under the Honali police station limits near Hubli in Karnataka in January this year as terror suspects. Raziuddin’s father Maulana Naseeruddin, also from Hyderabad, is currently lodged in the Sabarmati Jail in connection with the murder of former Gujarat home minister Hiren Pandiya. Recently, Raziuddin’s elder brother Muqamuddin was arrested in Hyderabad for alleged terror links. What all this proves is that the terror elements between the two states are operating as one group,” said a senior police official.

According to sources, interrogation of the suspects revealed that the October 2005 attack on the office of the special task force in Hyderabad and the December attack at Bangalore’s IISC was carried out by the same elements.

Another clear link between the terror elements in the state and Karnataka is the explosive material used in the blasts. In the Friday blasts in Bangalore, an explosive with an ammonium nitrate base was used while in the Gokul Chat and Lumbini Park blasts in the city in August last year, a similar ammonium nitrate base ‘Neogel 90’ was used.

But while the nexus has been established, the state police has not been able to dismantle a single sleeper cell. “So many suspects have been rounded up in the Mecca Masjid and twin blasts of last year. So many teams have fanned across to Karnataka, Jaipur and other blast sites but after all that, not a single arrest directly related to terrorists could be made. This is what is most frustrating for us,” the official added.

Based on preliminary reports, state police officials have been able to seize a few facts with regard to Friday’s serial blasts in Bangalore. “One that it was a low intensity one intended to create only panic (to reach all the way to the US) and not to cause major casualties. And like the Malegaon and Mecca Masjid blasts, it took place on a Friday during or just after the prayers. The message that is coming across is clear. We are here, we are invisible and can strike at will. This is what the police and the people are being told,” said the official.

‘Vote-bank politics aiding terror’

25 08 2008

‘Vote-bank politics aiding terror’
Monday August 25 2008 04:58 IST

Express News Service

CRY AGAINST TERROR: (From left) Andhra Bhoomi editor MVR Sastry, former head of RAW’s counter-terrorism wing B Raman, former Lok Ayukta Justice DJ Jagannadha Raju and former DGP TS Rao at a seminar on jehadi terrorism held in Hyderabad on Sunday.

HYDERABAD: A seminar on ‘Tackling jehadi terrorism’ was held at the Osmania University Law College here today under the auspices of Social Cause, a civil society organisation, on the eve of the first anniversary of the twin blasts at Lumbini Park and Gokul Chat Bhandar in the city.

Former director-general of police TS Rao, who was the moderator, said religious fundamentalism, entwined with vote-bank politics, was fuelling jehadi terrorism. “Despite concrete evidence that SIMI and other jehadi organisations had involvement in terror acts, some political parties are shielding them with evil motives,” he said.

Justice Jagannadha Raju said the unceasing extremist activities exposed the ineffectiveness of the current policies and legislations. Politically-motivated minority appeasement resulted in keeping stringent and effective modification of the existing laws at bay, he noted.

B Raman, former head of the Research and Analysis Wing, said global jehad took birth at a madarassa in Karachi, Pakistan, and produced several terrorist outfits including Lashkar-e-Toiba, al-Qaeda and, more recently, Indian Mujahideen.

“India has a good system, talent and infrastructure to deal with the threat but it is not ready to use the force. The police force is extremely motivated and untiring but political pressure is preventing the police from acting tough,” he said.

After one year of twin blasts in Hyderabad, victims are still suffering

25 08 2008

After one year of twin blasts in Hyderabad, victims are still suffering

Press Release

Sourc: khabarein.info

Civil Liberties Monitoring Committee, while expressing deep sorrow for the victims of the bomb blasts at Hyderabad, said that the even after one year of the blasts, government failed to provide the medical facilities and any help to the persons injured. The promises made by the government are only for the namesake, which have not been fulfilled. The condition of the persons injured in the blasts is worse than the dead. An example of such case is of 27 years old youth named Shiva Reddy, who after completing M.Tech from Anwal-ul-Uloom College, worked as design engineer at Vijay electrical company. On 25th August 2007 While returning from work he met two of his friends, “Uday and Badushah” near Gokul chat. The owner of the chat asked them to either come inside the shop or move away from there. So, they went inside the Gokul chat.

They were taking the token from the owner, suddenly a blast occurred in which Shiva Reddy and Badushah were severely injured, whereas Uday escaped with minor injury on his ear. Shiva Reddy became unconscious with severe injuries. Doctors said there is hope of only 5%. The ball bearings and the other material used in the bomb were struck in his various parts of body including head, hands, legs, liver, and abdomen etc. he was operated to remove ball bearings from the head and his nervous system got affected badly. His parents say even after five months of treatment at the hospital, there is no sign of recovery.

A ball bearing is still stuck in his brain, hand and leg, by touching its presence can be felt and body completely crippled. He cannot even talk, walk, hear and see. Five of his teeth are broken; vision of left eye is lost. Shiva is mentally so scared that he gets scary even with the presence of human beings around him. When anyone tries to talk to him in gesture, his body shivers. Shiva’s mother weeps inconsolably and says I have brought him up with lots of love care and affection, and provided him high level of education. She even goes to the extent of saying death is better than this kind of life. I cannot bear the suffering he is undergoing each second. She appeals with the folded hands to provide justice to them. During our conversation, with Shiva’s painful screams, the house was echoing. His father said only Rs. 20,000/- was given in the name of ex-gratis. During the stay at the hospital, they were ill treated by the staff and District Medical Health Officer. As per the saying of his brother Srinivas Reddy, the behavior of the hospital authorities was like how long will they take free treatment here, take away the victim from here.

Collector of Hyderabad visited him at the hospital and made some fake promises and he even asked them to take discharge from the hospital and bear all the medical expenditure themselves.

Now the condition is they have taken discharge from the hospital and Shiva’s treatment is very expensive, his family has to spend minimum of Rs.15, 000/ – per month towards his medical expenditure. Shiva’s elder brother Srinivas Reddy is married and had to leave his job to look after his brother. Father is employed in government printing press and looks after the family. The family has lost the earnings of the two brothers.

Chief Minister promised to provide job to Srinivas Reddy but not fulfilled yet. The unemployed brother of the victim is tired of visiting Secretariat. The family says that the government is hurting us by making fake promises. Chief Minister Mr. Rajashekhar Reddy who himself is a doctor by profession, could not feel the suffering of the victim and Shiva is considered as a general victim.

Civil Liberties Monitoring Committee after meeting this family believes that the government has failed to fulfill its duties and promises made. There is no budget in the government for the treatment of Shiva. Government does not have time to feel the pain of the mother. To provide the job to the brother of the victim, there are hurdles created by the officials, and ministries.

Civil liberties committees feels that the people of Hyderabad are under the continuous threat of Bomb terror and police terror. Two sides of terror have worsened the living conditions of the people. Victims’ confidence has lost from the government. Now peoples’ help is needed very much.

The Civil Liberties Monitoring Committee has already brought the facts of atrocities by police on youth to the notice of the society. Today we are presenting only one bomb blasts victim’s condition and government’s incapacity to help the victims before the people and appeals for immediate monetary support to this particular youth, Shiva reddy and fulfill their human and moral responsibility. It should always be kept in mind that saving any human life is the most precious gift.

His address is: H.No. 6-97, Brindavan Colony, New High School, Saroor nagar, Hyderabad. Telephone numbers are: 9908118630 and 24058156.

Civil Liberties Committee has demanded the government to extend medical treatment to Shiva Reddy and provide job to his unemployed brother.

Police loses terror trail
Victims left on their own
Families still reel under debts
Many still waiting for government’s help

Blasts still haunt victims 24 Aug

25 08 2008

Blasts still haunt victims
24 Aug 2008, 0328 hrs IST,TNN
Source TOI

HYDERABAD: Life has come to a standstill for Jeelani Begum. It has been a year since she lost her only son, Akramullah Khan, 19, but no day passes without her crying for him. Akram, a good-natured youth, was her only hope to take the family name forward and lead a dignified life.

His head constable father Asadullah Khan would ask the boy not to take the risk of eating at any roadside eatery. His father’s fears came true on August 25, 2007.

He stopped the auto he was commuting with his two sisters at Gokul Chat. “He took a parcel of chat and was making the exit when the blast had occurred,” Asadullah Khan, who has five daughters, recollected all the happenings of the day, which are still afresh in his mind. “I tried to stop him from going out on that day, but he did not listen,” Khan added.

Jeelani Begum, Khan’s wife, who is weighed down by her son’s loss, cannot ignore worldly worries. Akram was doing a part-time job while pursuing B Com to supplement the family income. In his death, the Khan’s family lost a a future hope.

“On one salary, how can we manage? When he was there, we were hoping that he would look after us and help perform the marriages of his five sisters. But now, there is no hope. Our health is deteriorating by the day,” Jeelani, a diabetic and a high blood pressure patient, said tears rolling down her cheeks.

J Narasimha Sharma spent her late 21-year-old daughter J Prathyusha’s birth anniversary on May 27, this year, at an old age home as his eldest daughter’s ambition was to set up a home for the aged after completing MS in the US.

On that fateful day, Prathyusha had gone to Koti to buy a book for her GRE examinations. Later, she went to Gokul Chat, her favourite eating joint to savour chat and lost her life in the blast.

“She was a bright child and would enthusiastically take part in cultural activities. During some college celebrations, she collected money from fellow students and donated it to Gandhi Hospital for treatment of heart patients. We are planning to institute a gold medal in her name to be given to the topper in her college,” Sharma said.

Hearing their friends praise the tasty chat at Gokul, Mohammad Rizwan Ali and Yahiya Abdul Khader could not control their temptation. Students of intermediate second year and cousins, both set out to the joint for the first time on August 25 last year after coming back from the college.

“If they were alive, they would have been in the first year engineering. Not a day passes without their mothers crying. Rizwan, the youngest of the three sons and intelligent, was very attached to his parents. Unable to bear his loss, his mother has shifted to Riyadh where her husband works,” Mohammad Muneer Uddin, 75, maternal grandfather of Rizwan and Yahiya said.

Kundan Das, who used to sell bags in front of Gokul Chat, was the sole breadwinner of a family comprising three daughters and two sons. As usual Das was at work when the blast took away his life. “I have taken up my father’s business after quitting my college. My uncles are supporting our family,” Anil K umar, 20, Das’s eldest son said.

Kishan Gode’s wife is forced to work as a labourer after his death in the blast. Kishan used to work at the eatery.
The debilitating blasts turned upside down many happy homes and left a permanent scar on the physhe of the city.

The victims only wish that such gory incidents do not recur. “It has happened to my family and many of others’. It should not happen to others,” Narsimha, Prathyusha’s father, who works in a private firm, said.

As many as 32 people were killed at the Gokul Chat blast and 11 at Lumbini Park on August 25 last year. The big question that is on everybody’s mine is: “Why are the perpetrators still moving scot-free?”

Tragic memories of black Saturday haunt victims

August 24th, 2008 – 4:08 pm ICT by IANS
Source: ThaiIndia.com

Hyderabad, Aug 24 (IANS) A year after Hyderabad was rocked by twin bomb blasts that snuffed out 43 lives, the real culprits remain at large while memories of the black Saturday still haunt numerous families.It was the evening of Aug 25, 2007 when a powerful explosion devastated Lumbini Park near the state secretariat, killing people enjoying a laser show. Moments later, another but more powerful bomb ripped through Gokul Chat, a popular eatery that was packed at that time.

Ten people were killed in the first blast, seven of of them tourists from Maharashtra. The number killed at the eatery in Koti, a business hub and a haunt of book lovers, was 33. Another 20 were injured.

Coming three months after the blast during Friday prayers at the historic Mecca Masjid that killed nine people, the twin blasts became this 400-year-old city’s worst terror attacks. They instilled a sense of insecurity in this truly cosmopolitan city of over seven million people.

While the failure to crack the case is frustrating the police, the memories of that day haunt many families as well as survivors. The blasts shattered many dreams.

Prathyusha, 21, wanted to go to the US for higher education. After buying a book, she dropped at her favourite Gokul eatery — only to die. Her family is yet to come to terms with the loss.

“The tragedy and her memory will always remain fresh in our minds. The wounds will not heal easily,” lamented her father J. Narasimha Sharma, who works in a private firm.

M. Susheela, 32, a bus conductor, had gone to Koti to buy ‘rakhis’ along with two relatives. On his way home, they stopped at the eatery for snacks when the bomb went off. All three died instantly.

“The failure of the investigating agencies to catch the culprits is painful for us,” said Susheela’s elder sister Chandrakala, who now looks after Susheela’s five-year-old son Sai Kiran.

“Terror attacks ignite passions. After hearing repeatedly how terrorists killed her mother, he says he wants to become a police officer to punish the guilty,” said Susheela, while trying to fight her tears.

The only hope of a head constable’s family. Akramullah Khan, 19, was studying B.Com and also doing a part-time job. He was the only brother of five sisters.

On the fateful day, he was travelling in an auto-rickshaw with two of his sisters. He asked the driver to stop at Gokul Chat and went in alone to take a parcel.

The two sisters watched in horror as their brother died in the massive explosion. The family said that not a single day passes without her mother Jeelani Begum crying for him.

The blast wiped out an entire family. Mohammed Saleem, 42, a realtor, his wife Syeda Farida Naaz, 37, and their sons – 8-year-old Amir and 6-year-old Mohammed Ali — had gone to Lumbini Park to see the laser show.

Half hour before the blast at the park, the family left for Goklu Chat as the children were more keen on savouring chat. Moments after the family entered the eatery, the powerful bomb killed them all.

A year later, the police still appear to be groping in the dark. The investigating agencies could not go beyond blaming the Bangladesh-based terror outfit Harkat-ul-Jihad-e-Islami (HUJI), believed to be also responsible for the Mecca Masjid blast.

They could only confirm that terrorists used Neogel-90, an ammonium nitrate base, in the IEDs, a pattern seen again in Ajmer and Jaipur blasts this year.

As many as 97 suspects were picked up for questioning and 21 were jailed on suspicion of their links with HUJI terrorists but the police have still failed to crack the case.

The police are clueless about where the bombs came from, how they were brought to Hyderabad and who planted them. As a result, not one single man directly involved in the explosions was arrested.

Police officials argue that it was not easy to crack the cases as the HUJI commanders, including Shahid alias Bilal, a native of Hyderabad, operate from Pakistan and Bangladesh.

The 97 picked up by the police included a few Bangladeshis staying illegally but they were not found linked to the terrorists. A majority of the suspects was let off.

Police said the terror group entrusted the job of smuggling and transportation of explosives, manufacture, planting and carrying out the attacks to different people, making it difficult for the investigating agencies to identify the real culprits.

Govt apathy rubs salt into blast scars
25 Aug 2008, 0459 hrs IST, Sunil Mungara,TNN

Source: TOI

HYDERABAD: A year after the twin blasts on August 25, 2007, many of those who were injured are yet to recover physically and emotionally from the state that they have been pushed to. What is worse is that most of them have exhausted the means of continuing their treatment. The government after paying Rs 20,000 ex gratia per person washed its hands off the affair. Apart from the dead, at least 60 were injured in the blasts at Gokul Chat at Koti and the Laserium at Lumbini Park.

G Sadasiva Reddy, who completed M Tech and was working as a design engineer in an electrical company has lost his memory completely after the blast. Though he speaks well, the tragedy for the family is that he does not even recognise them.

“It is worse than death,” his parents told TOI talking about his condition. Sadasiva Reddy received severe injuries on his head, hands, legs and abdomen at the Gokul Chat blast. He had gone there with his friends Uday and Badusha. First taken to Osmania General Hospital and later treated at Care Hospital, Sadasiva Reddy was discharged in January 2008. For his physiotherapy treatment and medicines, the family has to spend at least Rs 15,000 per month.

Sadasiva’s friend P Badusha’s condition is much worse: he still remains bedridden. A native of the city, Badusha, an M Tech, worked as a telecom engineer in Australia and had come home on a holiday when his world came crashing. His father P P Balaiah, a lecturer in a government college says that Badusha’s spinal cord is damaged and he can’t walk. Discharged from hospital five months ago, the physiotherapy treatment at home is costing the family a huge sum.

Another victim, D Satyanarayana, a resident of New Nallakunta lost his hearing capacity in his left ear. Along with his brother D Sivashankar, he had gone to Gokul Chat. Satyanarayana received severe injuries on his chest, hands and thigh, while Sivashankar lost his teeth and received injuries on his face.

“The splinters have still not been removed from my thigh. Doctors said that a major operation needs to be performed to remove them,” Satyanarayana said. Due to the disability, he does not drive a van that he used to run his business.