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Ahmedabad 2008 bomb blast: DG Ashish Bhatia unraveled the conspiracy in 19 days

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Anil Pushpangadhan, Gandhinagar: On July 26, 2008 a series of bomb blasts ripped across Ahmedabad leaving the city bloodied and stunned. It took a team, led by then Ahmedabad Joint Police Commissioner (Crime) Ashish Bhatia, just 19 days to unravel the conspiracy behind the blast.

Thirty people were arrested in connection with the case.

Ashish Bhatia, who at present is the Ahmedabad police commissioner, is now among the frontrunners for the post of Director General of Police (DGP) in Gujarat.

This year on July 26, it will be the 12 anniversary of the blast.

The blast ripped through Ahmedabad on the same day in 2008 in the evening.

In all, close to 20 different bombs had been planned in different parts of the city, which was to go off in a sequence.

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The team

The investigation was given to the then Joint Police Commissioner (Crime) Ashish Bhatia.

Abhay Chudasama was the DCP (Crime) then. The two were part of the Special team formed to investigate the case.

It also included IG Girish Singhal who was brought in from the Intelligence Bureau (IB).

ATS DIG Himanshu Shukla who was ASP Himmatnagar, Ahmedabad (rural), ACP Rajendra Asari who was DySP Dahod, Gandhinagar ACP Mayur Chavda who was was Anand Headquarter DySP and Mahisagar SP Usha Rada who was SP Mahila Crime Branch were also part of the team.

Of the total number of bomb blasts that happened in Ahmedabad, three were in Khadia,two in Bapunagar, Ramol, Naroda and Odhav each and one each in Amraiwadi, Vatva, Danilimda, Isanpur, Kalupur, Ahmedabad Civil, Sarkhej, Nikol and Khatraj.

Two bombs were found from Ramol and Khatraj from an AMTS bus and they were successfully diffused.

Within 19 days the team led by Ashish Bhatia cracked the case and in a press conference on August 14, 2008 announced the arrest of 30 suspects in connection with the case.

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Who were the accused

The main conspirators of the blasts were the Bhatkal brothers- Yasin and Riyaz.

One Mufti Abu Bashir was given the job of creating a sleeper cell of banned organisation SIMI in Ahmedabad.

Vadodara resident Kayamuddin Kapadiya was given the responsibility to plant the bomb.

The chargesheet in the case named 78 people.

Several of the accused were nabbed by Madhya Pradesh, Ujjain, Delhi, Mumbai, Karnataka, Kerala and Rajasthan police.

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