Tourists or terrorists, Odisha police in a fix!


BHUBANESWAR: After detention of five Iranian including three men and two women in Andhra Pradesh’s Visakhapatnam last night on the suspicion that they are suspected terrorists escaped from a hotel in Bhubaneswar, the Odisha police investigating into the matter whether they are tourists or terrorists.

A team Special Task Force (STF), which has reached Visakhapatnam, is brining the arrested persons to Bhubaneswar for further interrogation.

Police sources said they are all carrying Iranian passports.

There is still no clarity on what exactly these persons were doing in India and questioning them has yielded very contradictory responses.

While the police have only labeled them as suspects as of now, investigations are on to find out why these persons concealed their identity while they wanted to check into the Bhubaneswar based hotel.

Notably, the group of five persons comprised three in the age group of 23, a man and a woman in the age group of 50, had conceled facts about their identity and informed the hotel manager that they were from Iraq.

However, the Odisha and Andhra Pradesh police are in touch with the Iranian embassy to ascertain details of the five persons nabbed with Iranian passports.

The police in Odisha said the five went missing from a hotel in Bhuvaneswar after being asked to produce their identity proof a day before Republic Day.

After being alerted by Odisha, the Andhra police stopped a Toyota car with a Delhi registration number on Wednesday and detained the five.

“The people detained by Visakhapatnam police were the suspected terrorists who fled Odisha on the night of January 25,” Inspector General Crime Branch Arun Bothra said.

Meanwhile, the police are also in touch with the travel agent in Delhi from where the so far claimed to be Iran nationals rented the car bearing the number DL4C 9645.