Breakthrough in German Bakery blast, 2 LeT men held

Pune blast

Nearly seven months after the February 13 Pune German Backery blast left 17 dead and 56 injured, Maharashtra ATS today claimed to have cracked the case with the arrest of two LeT operatives.

Mirza Himayat Baig (29), head of Maharashtra LeT module, was arrested from Mahatma Gandhi bus stand in Pune yesterday afternoon, while his aide Shaikh Lalbaba Mohammed Hussain alias Bilal was nabbed from Subash Chandra Bose Marg in Nashik last night, Maharashtra ATS chief Rakesh Maria said.

"Both played a key role in engineering the Pune blast. The conspiracy was hatched in Udgir town in Latur district in January," he said.

A Pune court later remanded Baig in police custody till September 20.

The investigation took ATS teams to several places in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Gujarat, Daman and various other states, Maria said.

Two kg of RDX, soldering wires, cutters, LeT literature, manuals for making bombs, USD 1,200, Rs 10,500 cash, SIM cards procured using fake documents, mobile phones and pen drives were recovered from the duo, he said.

Baig had conducted recce of the German Bakery and was also involved in planting the bomb with Mohmmad Ahmed Zarar Siddibappa alias Yasin, a key Indian Mujahideen leader.

He was instrumental in bringing together the accused of 2006 Aurangabad arms haul case and Indian Mujahideen module to hatch the conspiracy and carry out the blast in the German Bakery.

Maria said Shaikh had visited LeT camps in Pakistan between January 2008 and early 2010 where he received advanced training in use of sophisticated weapons and making bombs.

He had sneaked into India thrice during the period through Bangladesh and Nepal border.

A mobile alarm timer was used to trigger the RDX-laden bomb and the image of Mohammed Ahmed alias Yasin was caught by CCTV camera at the eatery, frequented in large numbers by foreigners, Maria said.

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