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The city police have arrested two more suspected terrorists belonging to the Lashkar-e-Tayiba taking the total number of arrests since the December 28 attack on the Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore to four.
Police Commissioner Ajay Kumar Singh told UNI Saturday that the police was on the look out for a few more extremists and had obtained names of three others.
The duo were picked up from Punganur near Madanapalle in Andhra Pradesh on January 19 and after their interrogation, explosives, including three hand grenades, 17 electric detonators, 20 gelatine sticks were seized from a house near Chintamani in Kolar district of Karnataka.
The arrested men have been identified as Afsar Pasha, a radiator mechanic in Mavalli Lakkasandra in the city and Mohammad Irfan, a maulvi from Mulbagal in Kolar, hailing from Uttar Pradesh.
Police made the first breakthrough when they arrested a key LeT operator in South Abdul Rehman in Nalgonda in Andhra Pradesh on New Year's day.
On information provided by them another LeT extremist Habeeb was arrested at Almatti and on interrogation he revealed that plans were on to blow up the Almatti Dam across the Krishna river, the Kaiga Nuclear Power Plant and a transmission line from the Sharavathi Hydel station.
A report from Gulbarga said the Naryanpur Dam across the Krishna river had been declared a prohibited area following the LeT plot to blow up the Almatti Dam.
District Superintendent of Police K Ramachandra Rao said elaborate security arrangements have been made at the reservoir falling in the jurisdiction of Gulbarga and Raichur districts.
Police have been asked to keep a close watch on people moving under suspicious circumstances, Rao said.
The commissioner said the LeT extremists, numbering around five, had met in one of their hideouts in the city on December 18 and had planned an operation soon. The IISc shootout, perhaps, could have been the one they had planned, Singh said.
He said the arrests have given adequate evidence that the LeT was entrenched in the south and the police were successful in unearthing them.
Twenty-eight year old Afsar had been to Saudi Arabia and had also undergone jihadi training in Bangladesh including training in arms and explosives for about eight months during 2002-03. He was suspected to be involved in some bomb blasts in Dhaka in early 2003, during his stay in Bangladesh.
Police said Afsar had been recruiting and motivating people to undergo jihadi training and to carry out attacks in Karnataka. He had been promising some people arms training in Karnataka so that they could execute the plans.
Mohammed Irfan had been in Mulbagal for the last one year and had been in constant touch with Afsar and some other LeT operators. He had been requesting Afsar Pasha to organise training in arms and explosives for him.
From the residence of Irfan, police had recovered jihadi literature, two mobile phones and a motorcycle.
Both Afsar and Irfan have been remanded in police custody till January 27 and further investigation was on.
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