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2 Blast suspects held

2 Blast suspects held

Author: Rakesh Mohan Chaturvedi & Peryez Iqbal Sidiqqui
Publication: The Times of India
Date: March 11, 2006

Two suspects of the March 7 serial blasts in Varanasi were arrested in Hardoi on Friday. The duo resembles the sketches released by the police.

The police initially rounded up eight suspects based on information given by the locals. While the others were found to be innocent, the duo aroused the suspicion of the police further when it was found that they were staying on fake names in the local dharamashala. According to Hardoi SP K N Singh, the suspects also resembled the sketches released by the Varanasi police.

Adding to the suspicion were facts like the same height and demeanour as described by the vendor in Varanasi where two terrorists had left their bag. One of them is of Kashmiri origin. A cell phone has been recovered from their possession, according to intelligence sources. Police was trying to track down the calls made from the cell phone.

The duo also supposedly arrived in the city only on Thursday. They had not been seen here before and the police sources confirm that they are not locals. The two had tried to mislead the police by saying that they sell sunglasses on the streets. A team of the special task force (STF) sleuths had been hurriedly dispatched to Hardoi till the filing of report. The two will be brought to Lucknow for further interrogation and inquiries.

Meanwhile, the Uttar Pradesh police today announced a reward of Rs 1 lakh to anyone providing "concrete" lead to those behind the serial blasts that left 17 people dead in the temple city.

"The identity of those providing information and helping the police arrest those responsible for the blasts would be kept secret," director-general of police Yashpal Singh told reporters.

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