The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Ulfa or Bangla link in blast

Belakoba/Calcutta, Nov. 21: Investigators in Bengal suspect that Ulfa, a proscribed Assam group, helped the Kamtapur Liberation Organisation (KLO) carry out yesterday evening’s train blasts in which seven persons died.

Central security agencies, however, pointed a finger at Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen, which, they believe, used the KLO to trigger the blast in the Haldibari-New Jalpaiguri passenger train.

Senior railway police officials said the explosive, with a timer device, was brought by the United Liberation Front of Asom from Bangladesh and handed over to KLO activists.

Although there was some difference between Delhi and Calcutta on who provided the support to the KLO, both agreed that the source of the explosive was Bangladesh.

Ulfa and the KLO have been known to work together in the past. Police said without help from Ulfa, which has greater access to sophisticated arms and ammunition, it would not have been possible for the KLO to get the explosive.

Chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee, however, said the group behind the blast had yet to be identified. He said he had spoken to home minister Shivraj Patil and that a team from the central intelligence bureau would visit the spot.

Bengal was rocked by an explosion today, too, after a landmine suspected to have been planted by Maoists blew up in Midnapore’s Belpahari, injuring one Eastern Frontier Rifles jawan.

The IG, law and order, Raj Kanojia, said the north Bengal blast was “premeditated”. “We are stitching together the entire story and it is only a matter of a couple of days before we get to the bottom of it.”

An official indicated that the blast might have been triggered by a remote control device. The additional director- general of the railways, Vageesh Mishra, said: “Judging by the intensity of the blast, it was the handiwork of either some experts or those assisted by experts.”

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