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Indian numbers in blasts

New Delhi, March 14: The two Indians detained along with three Moroccans in connection with the Madrid train bombings are believed to be not directly involved in last Thursday’s carnage that left 200 rush-hour commuters dead and over 1,500 hurt.

“They are not directly involved in the bombing,” Indian officials have been told, sources said, adding that they have been detained, not arrested. But as their numbers were found on the cellphone of the Moroccans, investigators want to question them.

A Spanish government official said the two, Suresh Kumar and Vinay Kohli, owned a shop that was part of an underground industry of electronically “releasing” mobile phones to accept cheap and untraceable SIM cards. The official said these two men may have sold a phone to the group that carried out the attack. Police believe phones were used to set off the bombs.

Ministerial sources quoted by the Spanish press said the two Indians are residents of Madrid. “It is suspected that they are not terrorists but only ‘links’ to a terrorist outfit. They have carried out orders only. (An) Investigation is on,” a source was quoted as saying.

“We have not been officially contacted by the Spanish authorities. But we are in touch with the interior ministry and local authorities following the announcement of arrest of three Moroccans and two Indians,” India’s charge d’affaires R.K. Tyagi told PTI from Madrid.

“We have registered our keenness with the Spanish authorities for details pertaining to names and other particulars of these two persons,” Tyagi added.

Indications suggest that perhaps tonight, or sometime tomorrow, either the Indian embassy will be given access to talk to the two or Delhi will be provided more information about them.

In another development, the police found a videotape that claimed Osama bin Laden’s al Qaida carried out the attack. According to the transcript, the attacks were aimed at punishing Spain for siding with the US in its assault on Iraq.

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