In a major breakthrough in the 2002 terror attack case on American Center in Kolkata, the Gujarat Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) has arrested a 44 year old man. The man, Hasan Imam is suspected to be one of the conspirators of the attack and was nabbed from Bihar.
Following a tip-off, ATS officials nabbed him on Sunday from his residence in Aurangabad in Bihar and brought him here on Monday. An ATS release said Imam was a member of the banned terror outfit Harkat-ul-Jihadi-e-Islam (HuJI) as well as `Asif Raza Commando Force' formed by Aftab Ansari.
Ansari was involved in the kidnapping of two Rajkot-based jewellers in November 2000, wherein a ransom of Rs 1.5 crore was paid and the money was allegedly used to fund terror activities through a network of terror groups, said the ATS. Ansari was arrested by CBI in February 2002 upon his deportation from Dubai. He was the key accused in the terror attack on American Centre in Kolkata.
Imam allegedly worked closely with Ansari and the terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad to carry out the attack on the American Center in the wee hours of January 22, 2002. Four policemen were killed in the attack.
ATS said Imam was actively involved in the conspiracy. He arranged the motorcycle used by terrorists and also provided shelter to the other accused. Later he changed his name to Arif and settled down in Aurangabad, said the release.