German Bakery blasts: Was Yasin Bhatkal with Baig or was he with Qateel Siddiqui?
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Who was with Yasin Bhatkal at the February 13, 2010, German Bakery blast in Pune? The answer so far depended on who you asked.
The Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad claimed that Bhatkal was with school teacher Mirza Himayat Baig. The Delhi Police Special Cell said he was with Qateel Siddiqui and, in fact, have a confession from Siddiqui to that effect.
The Bangalore Police have a similar confession from Siddiqui. Neither Delhi Police nor Bangalore Police mention the presence of Baig.
Siddiqui was killed in prison in June 2012. Baig was sentenced to death in April 2013, a ruling he has challenged. Bhatkal is now in custody — and his testimony could unravel the entire German Bakery case. Because the two versions of what happened in Pune — one put together by the Maharashtra Police and the other by the police in Delhi and Bangalore — don't quite match.
WHAT MAHARASHTRA ATS SAID
The Maharashtra ATS claimed to have identified Bhatkal as the young man wearing a cap and carrying a rucksack from a grainy clip captured on CCTV at the neighbouring Hotel O. And said that he was accompanied by Baig.
The ATS also produced an auto-rickshaw driver who claimed that he had picked up "two boys, one was tall with fair complexion, wearing a cap and having two bags hanging on his person" from Pune railway station, and dropped them at Central Mall.
This auto-rickshaw driver told the court that "after looking at the photograph of one suspect in the German Bakery bomb blast case in a newspaper on 25-05-2010, he remembered that he had dropped him in his auto-rickshaw on the day of the explosion" and thus contacted the ATS two days "later on 27-05-2010".