RAW nabs Bangalore blasts suspect in top-secret mission
Vicky Nanjappa in Bangalore | March 04, 2009 00:25 IST
In a top secret mission, a team of the Research and Analysis Wing tracked down an absconding accused in the Bangalore serial blasts case in Muscat, and sneaked him out of Oman, since India doesn't have an extradition treaty with that country.
Sarfaraz Nawaz, 32, who allegedly played a major role in financing the Bangalore blasts, had sought refuge in Muscat.
Investigating officials told rediff.com that a RAW team managed to track down Nawaz in Muscat. They added that Nawaz was 'smuggled into' Bangalore on a chartered aircraft.
The entire operation was so secretive that even the Air Traffic Control was taken aback when they received a message to help the chartered aircraft land at the Bengaluru [Images] International Airport.
After landing at the airport, officials of the RAW and the Intelligence Bureau called top Central Industrial Security Force officials and directed them to escort the passengers in the aircraft.
The officials handed over Nawaz to the Bangalore police, who are currently questioning him.
Abdul Sattar, the prime accused in the case, had revealed Nawaz's role in the serial blasts during his interrogation.
Nawaz was reportedly close to Riyaz Bhatkal, a key Lashkar-e-Tayiba operative, who later took over the charge of the Indian Mujahideen.
With Nawaz's arrest, the Bangalore police are hopeful of tracking down the remaining suspects, who might have fled the country after the Bangalore blasts.
Naturally, such a mission would involve cooperation from Oman's Internal Security and Military Intelligence.
Well done team! Mr. Nawaz will now be 'assisting with inquiries'.
Background on RAW.
Wikipedia: Research and Analysis Wing
Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) is India's external intelligence agency. Formed in September 1968 after the Sino-Indian War of 1962 and the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, its primary function is collection of external intelligence, counter-terrorism and covert operations. In addition, it is also responsible for obtaining and analyzing information about foreign governments, corporations, and persons in order to advise Indian foreign policymakers.