News headlines

Times of India

Mumbai, July 12: The terror attack on Mumbai trains was carried out by Lashkar-e-Toiba and local Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) activists and was designed to trigger communal conflagration in the country’s financial capital, intelligence sources said.

While still waiting for clues to emerge, top intelligence sources in New Delhi seem pretty sure the blasts on the trains were plotted by Lashkar modules which are increasingly collaborating with activists of SIMI, which boasts of strong pockets of influence across Maharashtra.

The estimate of intelligence agencies here is derived from the scale of the attack, as well as precise information about the Lashkar’s sleeper cells that have proliferated in Maharashtra.

Sources in the home ministry, in fact, said that a carnage had seemed very much on the cards with information pouring in about stockpiling of arms and explosives by religious extremists.

Unlike last time when tip-offs helped the Maharashtra police foil the fidayeen attack on RSS headquarters at Nagpur, this time, Maharashtra and central sleuths failed to detect the plot.

"Every time, you cannot be lucky. Information as to which train they are going to attack and where is not easy to come by," said a top intelligence official engaged in counter-terror operations.

Officials here are convinced that the terrorists' objective was to cause communal mayhem in the city. The conviction is based on two facts.

First, the trains were targeted just after the communal-tinged violence in Bhiwandi, and the protests by Shiv Sainiks over the insult to the statue of Meenatai Thackeray by miscreants


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