Nagpur, Jun 1: The Maharashtra Police foiled a terror bid on the headquarters of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) in Nagpur and shot dead three armed terrorists early on Thursday June 1, morning.
The terrorists, who came in a white Ambassador car with a red beacon light, were killed in a shootout while trying to break through the security cordon at the RSS headquarters.
The police also recovered three AK-47 rifles and a diary from the terrorists and have sounded a red alert in the city. Security has been beefed up to unprecendented levels.
Nagpur Police Commissioner S P S Yadav said a police team chased the terrorists' car after they broke the first barrier about 200 metres from the headquarters.
When challenged by the police, the terrorists opened fire, but were killed in retaliatory firing.
"We have managed to shoot down all the three terrorists. There is no likelihood of any other terrorist involved, but we are looking into that possibility as well," Yadav said.
Yadav said two policemen were injured in the encounter which lasted for about five minutes. The condition of one of the injured was reported to be serious.
The identities of the three terrorists - who were in the age group of 20 to 22 years and believed to be members of terror outfit Lashkar-e-Toiba - are yet to be established, police said.
"What we now know for sure is that they were Islamic militants and did not belong to Nagpur. They were travelling and it's only after some investigation that we can establish more details," Yadav said.
Former RSS spokesman Ram Madhav, while codenmning the attack, said that around 0400 hrs (IST), the terrorists arrived at the headquarters and tried to breach the security cordon, but were challenged by the police "who successfully prevented the attack".
"We had some kind of prior information about the likelihood of an attack. The police did a commendable job and challenged the terrorists immediately. They have also made adequate security arrangements here, but it’s matter of grave concern. Terrorists can strike at will anywhere and government should do something about it, immediately," Madhav said.
He said the main concern now was the security of RSS offices all over the country and steps would be taken in this regard.
This is the second major incident of police foiling a terror bid in Maharashtra.
In May this year, the Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) had recovered 30 kg RDX, 17 AK-47 rifles and 50 hand grenades from a Jeep in Aurangabad and arrested 11 suspected Lashkar-e-Toiba militants planning to attack the Ellora caves.
The arms and ammunitions were being transported in computer boxes. This was the biggest seizure of RDX after the1993 serial bomb blasts in Mumbai.