B’lore blasts: Madani likely to be arrested soon

via Pioneer News Service | Kochi / Thiruvananthapuram published on June 7, 2010

Islamist leader Abdul Nasser Madani on Monday admitted that police officials from Bangalore had questioned him and his wife Sufiya even as reports came out that the Karnataka Police had decided to make him an accused in the Bangalore blasts case. A report on the investigations in Kerala has been submitted to the Bangalore City Police Commissioner and action on it is expected in two days. It is also said that Madani is likely to be arrested soon

Reports from Bangalore said that the preparation of the modified chargesheet in the case was in the final stages.. However, Madani said at the Medical College Hospital, Thiruvananthapuram where he was admitted on Sunday that the authorities had not told him anything about making him an accused or witness in the case while his critics alleged that the hospitalization was meant to avoid arrest.

Thadiyantavide Nazeer, LeT’s South India commander and first accused in the Bangalore blasts case, had told the police that he had contacted Sufiya Madani after the terror strike. The police had also learned that LeT boss was earlier an activist of Madani’s Islamic Sewak Sangh, the forerunner of his party, PDP. According to reports, the Central Intelligence Bureau had suggested listing Madani as an accused in the blasts case.

The Karnataka Police believe that Madani had prior knowledge of the LeT plan for terror strike in Bangalore. They had come to this conclusion on the basis of the revelations of Nazeer, the outfit’s Oman-based funds-manager Sarfaraz Nawaz and others. Though officials refused to confirm or deny reports on Madani being made an accused, unconfirmed reports said he could be named as the 31st accused.

Madani said in Thiruvananthapuram on Monday that the Karnataka Police officials had questioned him and his wife for about 15 minutes. “They did not ask me any serious questions,” he said. “But from Sufiya, they wanted to collect some details about certain party (PDP) leaders. They had made her sign the papers on which her answers were noted,” he said.

Madani and Sufiya were questioned by officials from the Karnataka Police over the weekend and this was followed by reports on his being made an accused. “We had noticed such reports appearing in the media. I asked them (officials) about the reason for this questioning without a prior notice. They told me that they were doing it because they had to prepare the chargesheet quickly,” he said.

Madani, who had been detained for nine years in a Coimbatore prison in connection with the case of the serial blasts there, claimed that he had no role in the Bangalore blasts, adding that some people were deliberately trying to harm him. Sufiya is the tenth accused in the case relating to the burning of a Tamil Nadu bus at Kalamassery off Kochi on September 9, 2005.

Following the revelations by Nazeer and others, the Karnataka Police had asked Madani and his wife to reach Bangalore for questioning on February 18 last, but they rejected the instruction. The reasons cited were that Madani had problems in traveling due to health complications and Sufiya could not leave Ernakulam district as per the conditions on which she was released on bail. Majority of the accused in the Bangalore blasts case were Keralites.

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