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Madhany arrest ends stand-off

Kollam, Aug. 17 (PTI): Cleric-turned-politician Abdul Nasser Madhany was arrested today by Karnataka police from his camp here in southern Kerala, ending an eight-day standoff between two state governments.

The arrest came after Madhany, an accused in the 2008 Bangalore blasts, said he would surrender in a court just hours before the deadline for executing the arrest warrant issued by a Bangalore court was to expire this evening.

Madhany, who had alleged “a deep-rooted conspiracy” to implicate him, was taken into custody as he drove out from his orphanage-cum-madarsa complex at Anwarassery after midday prayers with a heavy contingent of Kerala police in riot gear blocking the vehicle.

The Karnataka government had yesterday alleged that lack of co-operation from the Kerala government was delaying the arrest of the PDP leader, once an ally of the state’s ruling Left.

Madhany, listed as an accused after confessions by suspected Lashkar operative T. Nazir linking him to the Bangalore blasts, was taken to Thiruvananthapuram en route to Bangalore. Kollam SP Harshita Attalluri, who led the Kerala police team, confirmed the arrest.

In Bangalore, Karnataka chief minister B.S. Yeddyurappa thanked the Kerala government, a day after both states had blamed each other for the delay in executing the warrant.

The build-up began eight days ago when two police officers from Bangalore reached Kerala after Madhany’s anticipatory bail plea was rejected by Karnataka High Court. The two states reached an understanding last night on executing the warrant.

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