Mon, Jul 24, 2006 - Page 5 News List

Doctor, engineer detained in Mumbai bombing case

NO BREAKTHROUGHS The two will be questioned by police over their alleged involvement in the deadly train bombings, but major progress was still elusive


Indian police detained a Mumbai-based doctor and a software engineer for questioning in connection with the train blasts that killed more than 200 people, reports said yesterday, but there was no sign of a major breakthrough in the investigations.

The doctor allegedly has links to the outlawed Students Islamic Movement of India, a radical group which New Delhi suspects of being involved in planning the bombings that killed 207 people and wounded another 800, the DNA newspaper said, quoting unnamed officials.

A software engineer was also picked up in the southern high-tech hub of Bangalore on Saturday and questioned for five hours, the report said. The newspaper did not say if the two had been released.

Separately, the Times of India newspaper reported that one person had been detained in the nearby city of Pune and another two in Amravati district in Maharashtra state, of which Mumbai is the capital.

Police in Mumbai declined to comment on the reports.

Hundreds of people have been detained across India as investigators hunt down the perpetrators of the July 11 bombings that targeted seven packed Mumbai trains during the evening rush hour.

Police made their first arrests on Thursday, picking up three suspects whom a Mumbai judge remanded into custody until July 31.

At the time, police officer K.P. Raghuvanshi said the three men had definite links to "terrorist" activities in India and to terror networks in neighboring South Asian counties.

The Times reported that the arrested men had provided some key information to investigators during questioning but no major breakthrough had been made yet.

Police have said they expect to make more arrests soon.

Police and officials have repeatedly suggested that Islamic militants fighting Indian rule in its part of Kashmir -- specifically the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Tayyaba -- were behind the blasts, and have said the attack is linked to Pakistan. Pakistan has adamantly denied any involvement.

Kashmir is a predominantly Muslim territory divided between India and Pakistan, but claimed by both nuclear-armed countries.

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