Burdwan blast: NSG chief denies non-cooperation by Bengal

Written by: IANS
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Kolkata, Nov 28: While the West Bengal administration was obviously caught off-guard by the flourishing terror modules, National Security Guard (NSG) Director General J.N. Choudhury Friday denied any non-cooperation or leniency of the state government, but insisted there was scope for improving coordination between state and central agencies.

Speaking at an interactive session organised by MCC Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Choudhury also denied reports of RDX having been used in the Oct 2 Burdwan blast in which terror outfit Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen of Bangladesh (JMB) is suspected of involvement.

Burdwan blast: NSG chief denies non-cooperation by Bengal.
"Bangladeshi militants and criminals have taken refuge for long here and this is nothing new. Their existence could not be detected earlier because they have been keeping a completely low profile. You go after the thief once there is a theft. So, you can say we have learnt from the experience and I don't think this will happen again," said Choudhury.

"There have been reports that RDX was used in the IEDs, but I can categorically say there was no RDX. The explosive found from the site was ammonium nitrate," said Choudhury, who along with National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and National Investigation Agency (NIA) chief Sharad Kumar visited the blast site at Khagragarh in Burdwan shortly after the incident.

Choudhury also rejected allegations that the state government had not cooperated with the central agencies or was lenient in its response to the blast.

Opposition parties like the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Left Front have accused the state police of destroying evidence to cover the ruling "Trinamool Congress' links with Bangladeshi terror elements".

"We got 100 percent cooperation from the state government, but there is always scope for improvement and we are working on it. Coordination has been an issue and we have been working on ways on how to improve it," said Choudhury.

He refused to comment on West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's claims that the Burdwan blast was a handiwork of the BJP-led central government.

Choudhury also did not blame the state police for being unable to unearth the existence of terror module.

Only after the NIA took over the probe that the purported involvement of the JMB and the existence of terror modules were discovered.

"The blast occurred when the police were busy with Durga Puja and Eid. Most of the state police are understaffed and often overstretched. They are like general physicians. So, it will be inappropriate to expect them to act like super-specialists. We are the super-specialists," asserted Choudhury.

The NIA, which took over the blast probe following a directive by the union home ministry, too, had earlier denied reports of non-cooperation by the state police.

The accidental blast occurred at a rented house in Khagragarh and killed two suspected JMB militants and injured another. While several suspects, including blast mastermind Sajid, have been arrested from India, Bangladeshi police arrested nine people, among them Sajid's wife and JMB's women wing chief Fatema Begum, from Dhaka Nov 22.


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