Lashkar-e-Taiba’s ‘bomb expert’ Syed Abdul Karim ‘Tunda’ arrested
In a major catch on the Indo-Nepal border, the Delhi Police recently arrested Syed Abdul Karim alias ‘Tunda’, a Lashkar-eTaiba’s (LeT) commander who masterminded a series of bombing in North India in 1996-98. The Special Commissioner of Delhi Police Special Cell, S.N. Srivastava, informed that the 70-year-old LeT terrorist had planned to carry out a blast in Delhi ahead of Commonwealth Games in 2010. He could not succeed in his nefarious designs though, as his aides were arrested.
Tunda, an aide of fugitive don Dawood Ibrahim, is involved in around 40 bomb blast cases in Mumbai, Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Punjab, Hyderabad and Surat, added Srivastava. Tunda, who is wanted in 21 cases in Delhi alone, has been closely associated with Jamaatud-Dawa chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, who is wanted in India for the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack, Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, a top LeT commander and another accused in the 26/11 attacks, Adam Cheema, wanted in connection with the Mumbai blasts, Wadhawa Singh Babbar, who leads the Babbar Khalsa International, Ratandeep Singh, Karachi-based Indian Mujahideen absconders Abdul Aziz alias Bada Sajid and others, told the police.
The Special Cell of Delhi Police arrested Tunda on August 16 at around 3 p.m. in Uttarakhand’s Banbasa area close to the Nepal border on the basis of an information received by central intelligence agencies, said Srivastava, adding a Pakistani passport issued on January 23, 2013, was found in the possession of the man, who is one of the India’s most wanted.
Born in Chatta Lal Mian area behind Delite Cinema in Delhi’s Daryaganj area in 1943, Tunda’s family later shifted to Pilkhuwa (Ghaziabad, Uttar Pradesh).
Tunda, whose father worked as a metal worker, later worked as a carpenter, scrap dealer and merchant. Tunda lived in Pilkhuwa with his wife till 1992. He became a jihadi when he was 40-year-old. Tunda was allegedly indoctrinated by Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence in the 1980s. He had a role in ghastly communal riots in Bhiwandi (Maharashtra) in 1985.
An accused in 1993 Mumbai serial blasts, and 1997 and 1998 Delhi blasts besides others, Tunda escaped to Pakistan in 1998 to act as mentor for a younger generation of Lashkar operatives, financing and organising operations across India.
He was arrested in January 1994. But he escaped to Dhaka, Bangladesh, and taught making bombs to jihadi elements. He further travelled to Pakistan to train youth in LeT-organised camps.