LS security breach: Police say accused wanted to create anarchy; key conspirator's foreign links under probe

Lalit Jha.
Lalit Jha. Photo: @MithilaWaala/X

New Delhi: Lalit Jha, the arrested "mastermind" behind the recent Parliament security breach case, and his co-accused wanted to create anarchy in the country so that they could compel the government to meet their demands, stated the Delhi Police in their remand plea to a city court on Friday. As said by the police, Jha will be interrogated to ascertain whether he had an association with any enemy country or terrorist organisation and foreign funding.

According to sources, the police are likely to seek the Parliament's permission to recreate the December 13 incident, where a major security breach happened inside the Lok Sabha, involving smoke bombs and protests. It was unfolded on the anniversary of the 2001 attack on the parliament.

The remand plea of the accused was filed to the Patiala House court, where the Delhi police stated that Jha admitted that he met with the other accused in the case several times to plan the Parliament security breach.

Five individuals have been arrested so far connected to the case, including Lalit Jha. While Sagar Sharma and Manoranjan D were arrested from inside the Lok Sabha chamber, Neelam Devi and Amol Shinde were detained outside the Parliament building. Jha, who hails from West Bengal, was sent to seven-day police custody on Friday after his arrest last night.

Talking about the future course of the investigation, a senior police officer said that they will be taking Jha to Rajasthan to trace the places where he threw his phone and burnt the phones of others. "After the incident, he fled to Rajasthan where he stayed for two days and returned to Delhi last night," the officer said. The biggest challenge for the police was the fact that they did not have the mobile phones of the accused that could help them trace the origin of the conspiracy and ascertain the involvement of more people.

Police have been interrogating two more men -Kailash and Mahesh Kumawat - since morning, said the officer, adding that they have not been arrested yet.

 Lalit Jha, who was arrested on Thursday, revealed during the interrogation that he had thrown his phone near the Delhi-Jaipur border and destroyed the phones of the other accused," said the officer.

Police also suspect the involvement of foreign funding as the way the accused made the planning and visited Delhi multiple times to do the recce of the act. Police are also looking for the person who helped them in designing the shoes with cavities to hide canisters, sources added.

On being asked, why he committed the act, Jha told police that they were upset with "unemployment". Police have collected CCTV footage from Parliament and the vicinity to know if the accused were accompanied by other persons before the act.

Dump data of mobile phones active at the time of the incident around Parliament is also being collected, sources said. The police suspect that the accused had a plan B, in case their main plan failed.

During the hearing in the Patiala House court, police said, "Jha disclosed that they wanted to create anarchy in the country so that they can compel the government to meet their demands."

"He took the phones (of other accused) to hide them and to destroy evidence as part of the larger conspiracy. He disclosed that he threw his phone away on his way from Jaipur to Delhi."

The FIR registered in the matter details the modus operandi used by the accused duo of Sagar Sharma and Manoranjan D to smuggle smoke canisters inside the Parliament. The two persons had smuggled them in cavities cut into the left sole of custom-made sports shoes supported by thick rubber layers, according to the FIR.

The pamphlets that the duo - Manorajan D and Sagar Sharma - carried into the Lok Sabha had the picture of a fist against the backdrop of a tricolour, a slogan in Hindi and a slogan in English on the Manipur violence issue.

Around the same time, two others - Amol Shinde and Neelam Devi - sprayed coloured gas from canisters while shouting "tanashahi nahi chalegi" outside Parliament premises. Police have filed terrorism charges under the stringent UAPA against the four people.

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