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Two more held in Aug 11 riot case

The Mumbai Crime Branch (CB) yesterday arrested two more persons in connection with the August 11 protest at Azad Maidan, which escalated into a riot and left around 44 policemen injured and two rioters dead from gunshot wounds.


Wanton destruction: Demonstrators ran amok after a rally called by several Muslim organisations at Azad Maidan to protest against the riots in Assam went awry. File pic

Those arrested have been identified as Yusuf Ahmed Hussain Khan (25) and Sayed Salim Anwar Pasha alias Saleem Lightwala (40). With the arrests of these two persons, the number of those taken into custody by the police in connection with the case so far has risen to 63, of which five persons have been released after their involvement was ruled out.

After checking Khan’s call records, the police learnt that he was regularly in touch with individuals in Myanmar, Burma before and after the incident. The CB is currently investigating whether the suspect could be involved in the funding process for the rally.

“Khan and Pasha had participated in the rally, but Khan was in touch with people in Myanmar and used to frequently call numbers over there. We suspect his role in the funding of the rally,” said an officer from the Crime Branch.

The police used recorded footage to ascertain their involvement and began a search for the duo as they had fled after the rally. They were eventually traced to Mysore in Karnataka and nabbed. “They are seen in the footage, but fled after the rally. We have learned that Khan was in frequent touch with people in Myanmar and we suspect they might be anti-social elements and they may have funded the rally,” said a CB officer.

The CB is already investigating why the organisers had visited the Gulf just before the rally and whether any foreign hand is involved.

“With these arrests, some more points will become clearer. We have got police custody of the two persons till October 25,” said a CB officer.  

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