Syed Abdul Karim Tunda: The story from Pilkhuwa to Pakistan
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Churan and bombs
The report describes how Tunda, at age 10, supposedly picked up the basics of bomb-making from his observations of a churanwalla. The latter would mix various churan types, add white powder and touch it with a stick, which would burst into flames; this was how Tunda learnt about the concoction of potassium chlorate, sugar and sulphuric acid.
In later years, Tunda allegedly procured the two chemicals from a clothes printing factory. The bomb was apparently made like this: he would seal one end of an aluminium pipe with paper and dry soil, fill the pipe with a mixture of potassium chlorate and sugar and seal the other end, too, with paper. A capsule with sulphuric acid would generate a fire, which would cause the potassium chlorate and sugar to explode. The report cites Tunda as saying he and his associates used this technique to set off 43 explosions in Mumbai, Hyderabad, Delhi and other places.
Tunda reportedly admits having been drawn towards jihad around age 42 following communal violence in Meerut, Assam and Bhiwandi, where four Muslim men including a relative of his, Jafar Bhai, had been killed.
Loss of a hand
Contrary to a popular story that he lost his left hand while experimenting with explosives, the report cites Tunda as attributing it to the demonstration of a firearm. In 1985, Tunda has gone to Tonk in Rajasthan for a meeting at a mosque, allegedly looking for support in a jihadi mission. He was demonstrating the use of a pipe gun, the report says, when it went off, leading to the loss of the hand.
By then, the school dropout had extensively translated the Quran into Urdu. He had taught himself Arabic by studying translated books, and preached to young men.
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