Lucknow: Anti-terror operations to flush out two terrorists, suspected to be linked with the Bhopal-Ujjain train blast, holed up in a house in the outskirts of Lucknow continued late tonight, police said.
It said it had found that two terrorists, instead of one, were hiding in the house and had earlier resorted to intermittent firing. An Anti Terror Squad (ATS) officer said "we have withheld firing from our side" to try to catch them alive.
At least 10 people were injured, three of them seriously, in the IED blast near Jabdi station in Shajapur district of Madhya Pradesh early today.
Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Daljit Chaudhary tonight said "after drilling a portion of the roof of the house (where the terrorist are holed up), we were surprised to know that actually there are two terrorists holed up in the house. Initially, we had thought that there was only one terrorist."
"Both of them are very much alive. Two weapons have also been spotted lying there," he said. Chaudhary said that adequate time was given to the suspected terrorists to surrender, but they did not choose to do so.
The ADG also said that the UP Police want to capture them alive. "We still want to arrest them," he said. Meanwhile, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to UP DGP Javeed Ahmad, who briefed him about the incident and the action taken.
Commandos of paramilitary forces are being rushed to assist the anti-terror squad and local police in capturing the person hiding here. The ATS operation was launched hours before the final phase of polling in Assembly election covering 40 seats in eastern Uttar Pradesh.
According to the locals, at around 3.30 PM ,over 30 policemen started vacating the houses in the locality to corner the suspects. The residents said as the suspect got wind of police plans, he started firing at police party and gunshots were fired from both the sides. IG ATS Aseem Arun summoned elite commandos from Bijnaur police facility. The ATS team is trying to ensure that the suspect runs out of ammunition before barging inside.
IG Lucknow Zone A Satish Ganesh said, "The suspect was not surrendering. Instead he was resorting to firing. Chilli bombs were used to smoke him out." Arun, who was conducting the operation, said, "When the police knocked the door (of the house where the terror suspect is holed up), he closed the door, and then there was a sound of pistol cocking, which proved that he has weapons." He said the suspect resorted to intermittent firing. "We have withheld firing from our side. It appears only one person is hiding inside the house," he said.