India hunt as terror suspect Afzal Usmani flees Mumbai court

20.09.2013 16:19

Afzal Usmani is
accused of
involvement in bomb attacks in
Ahmedabad and Surat.
Police said he disappeared after being
taken to the court for a hearing with
other suspects in the case.
Nearly 50 people died in 17 blasts in
Ahmedabad on 26 July 2008. The next
day 22 bombs were found in Surat, but
they were all defused.
Mr Usmani had been brought to the
Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime
Act (MCOCA) court along with others
from Taloja Central Jail and gave police
the slip on the pretext of going to the
toilet, PTI news agency reported, quoting
Special Judge AL Pansare said the escape
was "a serious offence".
"It is negligence on the part of the escort
team which brought the accused to
court," the judge said.
"This will have [an] impact on other
cases also. It is a very unfortunate
Mr Usmani was arrested in September
2008 with four other alleged members of
Indian Mujahideen.
They were blamed for the blasts that
struck residential areas, market places,
public transport and hospitals in
Ahmedabad - Gujarat state's commercial
capital - within an hour.
Several unexploded bombs were also
Soon after the blasts, Indian Mujahideen
said in an email to a television channel
that the group was behind the