The Jalandhar Police Commissionerate on Monday claimed to have solved the two-month-old blast case at the Maqsudan police station with the arrest of two BTech students of the local St Soldier College of Engineering and Technology — Shahid Qayoom (22) and Fazil Bashir (23).
The low-intensity explosions on September 14 were the handiwork of Kashmir-based Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind (AGH) to which the arrested students were aligned, the police said. Zakir Rashid Bhatt alias Zakir Mussa, who heads the terror outfit, masterminded and guided the attacks.
Police Commissioner Gurpreet Singh Bhullar said the Kashmiri students carried out the blasts after they came in contact with Mir Ravoof Ahmed alias Rouf and Mir Umar Ramzan alias Gazi, both “trained AGH operatives”. He said Rouf and Gazi flew to Chandigarh from Srinagar on September 13, “only to carry out the attack”.
Bhullar said Qayoom and Bashir had links with the Kashmiri students nabbed at CT Institute of Engineering and Technology last month and they were all members of a terror module. “Otherwise, the two cases are not linked.”
The officer said AGH recruiter Amir of Dada Sara Tral in Kashmir radicalised the students while they were in Kashmir. On reaching Chandigarh, “Rouf and Gazi travelled to Jalandhar by bus where they met Qayoom and Bashir. They carried out a recce of the Maqsudan police station on September 13”.
Bhullar said they contemplated throwing grenades at CRPF and ITBP camps near the Bidhipur railway crossing and conducted a recce.
On September 14, the four, carrying grenades and wearing masks, left for the police station at 5.30 pm, deciding to get together at the Jalandhar bus stand after the attack. At 7.40 pm, four of them hurled a grenade each at the police station and fled on two autos. They then boarded a bus for J&K and fled.
Bashir was arrested by the Punjab Police from Awantipora in Kashmir on November 3 and Qayoom from Jalandhar a day later. They were produced at alocal court on Monday, which sent them to police remand for four days.
Meanwhile, Anil Chopra, Director of St Soldier College said that the two students had dropped out of the college.