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Lucknow encounter ends, terror suspect linked to MP train blast killed

One suspected terrorist has been holed up inside a house in Lucknow’s Thakurganj area.

India TV News Desk, Lucknow [ Updated: March 08, 2017 6:47 IST ]
Suspected terrorist holed up in Lucknow
Suspected terrorist holed up in LucknowPhoto:PTI

After more than   12 hours of intermittent firing and the use of tear gas and smoke bombs, the Lucknow encounter finally came to an end in the wee hours of Wednesday. 

One terror suspect linked to Bhopal-Ujjain train blast was killed in this encounter. The slain terrorist Saifulla is believed to be associated with the ISIS. 

Seven weapons including a country made pistol, a 9mm pistol, 1.5 kg gun power, sharpnels, ball bearings have been recovered from the slain terrorist.

AN ISIS flag has also been recovered from the spot.

nti-terror operations to flush out two suspected terrorists, believed to be linked to the blast in a passenger train in Madhya Pradesh earlier today, holed up in a house in the outskirts of Lucknow continued late tonight, with reports of exchange of fire between the accused and the Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terrorist Squad personnel for over 10 hours now. 

UP police said it had found that two terrorists, instead of one, were hiding in the house and had earlier resorted to intermittent firing. An Anti Terror Squad (ATS) officer said "we have withheld firing from our side" to try to catch them alive. 

It was initially believed that only one suspect was inside the house. 

While one suspected terrorist is believed to have been identified as Saifullah, identity of the other accused is yet to be established. They were allegedly involved in the blast in Bhopal-Ujjain passenger train near Jabdi station in Shajapur district today, injuring at least nine people.

UP Police indicated the suspects might have links with the Islamic State.

Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Daljit Chaudhary tonight said "after drilling a portion of the roof of the house (where the terrorist are holed up), we were surprised to know that actually there are two terrorists holed up in the house. Initially, we had thought that there was only one terrorist." 

"Both of them are very much alive. Two weapons have also been spotted lying there," he said. 

Chaudhary said that adequate time was given to the suspected terrorists to surrender, but they did not choose to do so. 

The ADG also said that the UP Police want to capture them alive. "We still want to arrest them," he said. 

Chaudhary also said that two terror suspects have been held in Kanpur and one in Etawah. 

Those arrested in Kanpur might be having some possible links with the person holed up in Lucknow. 

"The operation is the result of the UP police receiving specific inputs regarding possible terror suspects in the state," Chaudhary said, adding the terror suspect might be linked to train blast in Madhya Pradesh this morning. 

Meanwhile, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to UP DGP Javeed Ahmad, who briefed him about the incident and the action taken. 

Commandos of paramilitary forces are being rushed to assist the anti-terror squad and local police in capturing the person hiding here. 

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The UP ATS has said it received information in the afternoon that a suspect involved in terrorist operation was holed up in the house.

According to locals, at around 3.30 PM over 30 policemen started vacating the houses in the locality to corner the suspect. 

IG ATS Aseem Arun summoned elite commandos from Bijnaur police facility. The ATS team is trying to ensure that the suspect runs out of ammunition before barging inside. 

"As the suspect got wind of their plans, he started firing at police party. Gunshots were fired from both the sides," local residents said. 

India Tv - Crowd gathers as UP ATS carries out operation to nab suspected terroristCrowd gathers as UP ATS carries out operation to nab suspected terrorist

The ATS said the suspect has arms and ammunitions and is firing intermittently. While the security personnel have not fired weapon, chilli bombs have been used to force him out of the house. 

The force said it was not in a hurry and wants to frustrate him out to force him to surrender as they have time on their side. 

Arun, who was conducting the operation, said, "When the police knocked the door (of the house where the terror suspect is holed up), he closed the door, and then there was a sound of pistol fire, which proved that he has weapons. 

"We are not in a hurry to finish the operation, but want to catch him alive. Hence, we are using chilly powder," he said. 

India Tv - UP ATS during their operation against a suspected terrorist in Lucknow UP ATS during their operation against a suspected terrorist in Lucknow

He said the suspect resorted to intermittent firing. "We have withheld firing from our side. It appears only one person is hiding inside the house," he said The UP Police was tipped off by central intelligence agencies, Chaudhary said, and added that one arrest was made in Kanpur and there could be more than one terror suspect in Lucknow. 

He also mentioned that terror linkage, connection to Ujjain train blast and details of the module would be revealed only after interrogation of the suspects. 

Police said that the area where the suspected terrorist is holed up is densely populated. 

The police have cut off the electricity connection of the house where the suspect is holed up. An ambulance has also reached at the spot as a precautionary measure.

"We would be able to comment on the motive of the person once he is arrested. There is no point in sharing any input before the operation was over," the ADG said. 

He said it was a tactical operation, aimed at incurring minimum loss. 

UP DGP Javeed Ahmed, when contacted, said the UP Police was trying to convince the person holed up in the house to surrender. 

He also said, "We have detained someone from Kanpur. However, it is too early to link this suspected terrorist to the train blast." 

To a question on the incident taking place a day before the final phase of polling in UP tomorrow, the DGP said, "The conduct of polls in UP has been so far peaceful." 

Meanwhile, the Madhya Pradesh police have arrested at least three suspects from Pipariya town in Hoshangabad district in connection with the blast in the Bhopal-Ujjain passenger train that left at least nine people injured. The MP Police has confirmed that the blast was an act of terror and that there was evidence of the use of IED.

The Home Ministry has said that it is monitoring the situation.

Police said that suspect is a resident of Lucknow and the tip off to the UP ATS was given from an "outside state."

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