The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Saturday recovered 18 live bombs in Ranchi at the instance of a person detained in connection with the multiple blasts at an election rally in Patna which was addressed by PM Narendra Modi last year.
After a detailed interrogation of four persons of the Ranchi module, including Hyder Ali alias 'Black Beauty', having association with banned terror groups like SIMI and Indian Mujahideen, NIA identified some more members of this module, official sources said.
The arrest of the four people on May 20 had unravelled a conspiracy by the 'Ranchi module' to target Narendra Modi in October last year when he was addressing a political rally in Patna, NIA had claimed. Following leads, NIA last night detained two persons identified, as Ifthekar and Feroz Aslam, and at their instance recovered 18 live bombs near Sithio village and detonators and explosives from Hindpirhi in Jharkhand, the sources said.
They said the bombs were similar as used by the 'Ranchi Module' in the October rally of Modi. NIA had claimed the arrested persons had told their interrogators during questioning that they wanted to target Modi and had also carried out dry runs at five places -- Akbarpur, Kanpur, Varanasi (Uttar Pradesh), Delhi and Patna.
But finding it very difficult in view of Modi's security, they planted bombs at the Patna rally out one of which was placed barely 100 metres from the dais, NIA officials said. Besides Ali, NIA had arrested Mojibullah, Numan Ansari and a juvenile (whose identity was not disclosed).
Except for Ali, NIA had announced a cash reward of Rs five lakh on the heads of the other three who allegedly planted the bombs during the October 27 rally of Modi.
At least seven people were killed and scores others injured when bombs exploded at a make-shift railway platform and at the rally of Modi.