The Bihar Police have discovered that two major train accidents near Kanpur that led to the death of 151 passengers and wounded 200 others were orchestrated by Pakistan's spy agency ISI. Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) team went to Bihar on Wednesday to probe the Kanpur train accident after three people were arrested in connection with the case.
"Intelligence Bureau, Research and Analysis Wing and concerned officials are probing the matter. I will comment once investigation is complete," said MoS Railways Manoj Sinha.
Three persons arrested on Tuesday in connection with Kanpur train tragedy were sent to six day police remand by Motihari court.
Umashankar Patel, Motilal Paswan and Mukesh Yadav were arrested from Motihari on the Indo-Nepal border. They were reportedly working for an ISI agent, a Nepalese citizen based in Dubai.
"These criminals were arrested for their involvement in placing a cooker bomb on the railway track near Ghorasahan in the district on October 1 last year. They have confessed to having worked for an ISI agent," district SP Jitender Rana told the Times of India over phone.
He also said that one of them confessed to planting explosives to derail the Indore-Patna Express and Ajmer-Sealdah Express near Kanpur in 2016.
Motilal was earlier a maoist working in East Champaran district, Rana said. "Umashankar has at least four criminal cases against him while 12 cases are lodged against Motilal and Mukesh," the SP said. The police are trying to gather information on the kingpin of the gang.
They are also trying to ascertain if Motilal was the area commander of the extremist group, which would mean the fears of the ISI employing them have materialised.
Motilal confessed to planting explosives on the track near Kanpur for damaging two trains.
"Brij had received funds from Dubai for the purpose. Brij had promised flats, vehicles and finances to produce a Bhojpuri movie to the trio arrested from Motihari," said a police officer involved in the interrogation.
"Our team of investigators are in touch with the local police and will examine the disclosures made by the arrested accused. If our preliminary conclusions vet the ISI-link theory, there is a possibility of NIA taking over the investigation," said an NIA official.
At least 151 people died on November 21, 2016 when the Indore-Patna Express flew off the track. A month later, 50 people were injured when Ajmer-Sealdah Express derailed. Both incidents took place near Kanpur.
The police is looking for two others -- Gajendra Sharma and Rakesh Yadav -- said to be hiding in East Champaran.