Mateen Hafeez & Nitasha Natu/TNN
Mumbai, Oct 10: Crime branch officials tracking terror suspects in Mumbai were sheltered by Muslim families in their homes for a few days. The undercover officers took the families into confidence and used their houses as bases to observe the movements of the suspects before zeroing in on them.
“They played a very important role by supporting us in our operation,’’ joint commissioner of police (crime) Rakesh Maria said. Several suspects who were picked up from Mumbai and the neighbouring districts stayed in Muslim-dominated areas. For the cops, it was very difficult to move around there without being noticed.
The police identified some families through their contacts in Kurla, Cheetah Camp, and Mumbra, where the officers were provided shelter by Muslim families. “We stayed there for two days, watched the movements of the suspects and kept passing on the information to the crime branch headquarters where senior officers worked on it,’’ a police officer said. The basic idea was to confirm the identities of the suspects before picking them up.
In one instance, an officer apparently shot pictures of a suspect with his cellphone and sent it to headquarters where it was shown to one of the arrested accused. “He confirmed the identity, after which the suspect was arrested,’’ the officer said.