Terror probe stuck in email maze?

Sep 10, 2011, 07:00 IST | Atul Krishan

With a fourth one, supposedly from Indian Mujahideen, received on Friday evening, security agencies are unsure whether the messages are a prank or a modus operandi of terror groups to confuse investigations

With a fourth one, supposedly from Indian Mujahideen, received on Friday evening, security agencies are unsure whether the messages are a prank or a modus operandi of terror groups to confuse investigations

DOG DAYS: Security personnel at the scene of the blast outside Delhi
High Court on Wednesday. File pic

A fourth terror email on the Delhi High Court blast was received by some media organisations last evening. This mail claims that the third email was sent by Indian Mujahideen. The email also says that the next target of IM in now Ahmedabad. The latest email was sent from chotoominani5@gmail.com, the same address from which the second message was received on Thursday.

Delhi police on Friday had received the third email, purportedly from IM, in which they claimed responsibility for the blast that took place outside Delhi High Court on Wednesday. The mail gave the police a riddle saying that it was the name of the place which the group will target next.

You've got mail!
Delhi police spokesperson Rajan Bhagat said that they have received an email and are trying to trace the place from where it was sent. He also said that the mail has been sent from the id kill.indian@yahoo.com. This is the fourth mail that has been sent by suspected terror outfits in connection with the Delhi bomb blast.

"1, 8, 5, 13, 4, 1,2,1,4 was their hint of their next target point. If we go through the English alphabet it points towards Ahmedabad. It could be a joke but we are taking it seriously," said a senior police official. 
"This is to inform you that we Indian Mujaheedin claim the terror attack on Delhi high court. I just want to pass a message to the Indian government that the next blast will be so cruel that you people won't be able to forget it for decades and if you are willing to know the target of the next attack it is 1, 8, 5, 13, 4, 1, 2, 1, 4. While you come to know what it stands for the next blast will be done. If you have any question get back soon because we don't have time for anything," read the email.

On guard: Security personnel maintaining vigil at the blast site at Delhi
High Court in New Delhi. file pic

Inconclusive leads
Investigators battling for conclusive leads to crack the third worst terror attack since the November 2008 Mumbai strike arrested a man in Jammu and Kashmir who allegedly sent the first email hours after the deadly explosion.

The first message claimed that the attack was done by the Pakistan-based Harkat-ul-Jehadi-al-Islami (HuJI).
The HuJI email was tracked to an Internet cafe in Jammu and Kashmir's Kishtwar district. It threatened to carry out more such attacks if the death penalty to 2001 parliament attack convict Afzal Guru was not immediately repealed.

Chidambaram said the sender of the HuJI email has been taken into custody for interrogation. 'We would like to wait for that report to come.'

The Kashmir police identified the suspect as Mohammad Sayeed who has admitted that he had sent the email from Global Internet Cafe in the Kashmir town.
With Chidambaram making it clear that all mails were being treated seriously, the investigators were busy tracking the senders and the places these mails were sent from.

No breakthroughs
Sleuths led by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) were pursuing scattered leads to crack the case but have not achieved any major breakthrough.
Chidambaram said preliminary findings of the forensic examination indicated presence of nitrate and traces of some other explosives used in the bomb.

"These findings are being reconciled to get a clear picture of the exact nature of the explosive used in the blast," he said, in an indication that the investigators had not conclusively found what explosive was used.
Chidambaram admitted that the leads followed so far were 'not conclusive'. "We found there are promising leads; I can't say they are very conclusive leads. These are being pursued round the clock with help of other agencies, abroad too," he said. 

He defended the security agencies against criticism that they had failed to stop terror attacks, saying it took time to build capacities, noting that the process had begun after 26/11 which is also when he took over as home minister. He said he was prepared to take decisions that might be questioned by audits but was trying to ensure that the best weapons and bullet proof jackets are available.

Meanwhile, Delhi police were preparing a third sketch of a suspect of the bombing and were expected to release it Saturday.
Police, acting on a theory that the attackers might have done a recce inside the court premises, are scanning a few of the close-circuit television (CCTV) cameras within the building. However, they have not been able to find a face to match the sketches.
The reward money for any input on the Delhi blast has also been raised to Rs.10 Lakh from Rs.5 lakh declared earlier.

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