Thiruvananthapuram: Even as the accused in the Kozhikode train fire case, Shahrukh Saifi has deposed before the investigators that he had planned the attack on his own, police have not taken that version at all.
Sources in the Kerala Police, who are probing the case, told IANS that there are several missing dots in what Shahrukh Saifi was saying and what actually took place on the fateful day.
A bogey in the Executive Express train from Alappuzha to Kannur was set on fire by a youth April 2 night after it left Kozhikode junction and was on way to Kannur at Elathur. In the tragic incident, three people, including a two-year-old infant were dead and their bodies were found on the railway track. Many were injured with four being admitted to the Kozhikode medical college and one of the injured in critical condition.
Police investigators found that the accused was from Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh and later arrested him from Ratnagiri in Maharashtra. The Kerala Police special team led by ADGP, MR Ajith Kumar is interrogating him but sources in the police told IANS that he was trying to divert the investigation and was not giving proper responses to the questions.
Police investigators are of the opinion that Shahrukh Saifi had got some support from Kerala. They are investigating how he reached Shornur in Kerala’s Palakkad district and bought four litres of petrol from a fuel pump at Kuzhapulli in Shornur.
Senior PFI leaders, including the arrested C Rouf, are from Pattambi near to Shoranur and the banned Islamist organisation has a huge network in the area. The Popular Front of India (PFI) had a religious centre, Sathya Sarani in Manjeri, Malappuram district, which is widely accused of being the hub that was used to forcefully convert people. Manjeri in Malappuram district is near Shornur and here also the banned PFI has a big network.
While the ban on the PFI is in force since September 2022, the Islamist group has not found any difficulty in its operation as the political arm of the PFI, the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI), which is active on the ground and almost all the state level leaders of the SDPI are drawn from the PFI.
SDPI national general secretary, Majid Faizi, it is to be noted, is one of the founding leaders of the National Democratic Front (NDF), the outfit that later emerged as the Popular Front of India (PFI).