India captures Yasin Bhatkal, one of its most wanted terrorists


Indian police cordon off the area of a bomb blast site in Dadar Kabutarkhana area, in Mumbai on July 13, 2011.


Indranil Mukherjee

Indian intelligence officers captured one of the country’s most wanted terrorists on Wednesday night.

Yasin Bhatkal, who officials say is the co-founder of the Indian Mujahideen (IM) militant group, was arrested on the India-Nepal border, in the Indian state of Bihar.

Bhatkal is believed to be the mastermind behind three coordinated bombings in Mumbai on July 13, 2011. The bomb blasts at the Opera House, Zaveri Bazaar and Dadar West killed 27 people and wounded 130.

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IM was outlawed in 2010 after Indian officials said the group was responsible for bombing a German bakery in the city of Pune, killing 17 people were and injuring 64. Reportedly, CCTV showed Bhatkal planting a bomb in the bakery.

IM has also been accused of carrying out terror attacks in Bangalore, Hyderabad and Delhi.

Bhatkal, 30, had been on the run for more than five years, eluding police by using a variety of aliases.

This is the second major terrorism arrest in the past two weeks. The Delhi police recently detained Abdul Karim Tunda, an explosives expert who had been operating from Pakistan, at the Nepal border.