Prashant Dayal, Deewal Part-41: Ahmedabad Crime Branch on any normal day is teeming with people. There is a steady flow of policemen bring in and taking away criminals and accused men and women in the building. But even the receptionist at the entrance of the Crime Branch office was surprised by the scenario since the last two days. Not just the usual employees and officials. But the senior officers of the crime branch too had not come to the office in the past two days. Actually, Sinha had temporarily shifted his base to another office, which not much in the Crime Branch were aware of. He had moved to the branch office in Dafnala in Shahibaug. Bungalow number 15 was the office, which was a public office but because it was surrounded by the houses of other IAS and IPS officers, there was a strange sense of calm in this office. As the CBI would conduct all its private operations from the branch office at bungalow number 15, DCP Sinha would come in every day early in the morning and work till late night, constantly on his phone and on his laptop. Even his commandos would be rarely summoned inside his office for any instructions. Since last two days, he even began to get his food at work in a tiffin. Sometimes He would get out for an hour or so. Every time there is a situation like this in the crime branch; it is always the calm before the storm. The visited journalists too were being sent away saying the DCP was not in. They too began to wonder if the crime branch is up to some big operation that they are keeping under wraps. Sinha would tell the ones who'd call him up that he is not keeping well and is on rest. The scribes had no choice but to believe what they were being told.
Three different teams had reached Madhya Pradesh, Kerala, and Hyderabad. They kept Sinha informed of even the minutest detail about the operation. The team in Madhya Pradesh were staying opposite Bhasker Mall in Bhopal. He had instructed the team that the local police should not be aware of their presence in the city and the whole operation has to be conducted without their knowledge. The team that went to Bhopal had the information that Mohammed was a big-time criminal, but it turned out that Mohammed was actually a big-shot lawyer. This became a cause of worry for Sinha. He knew that if they went on to arrest a lawyer, the Bar Council will not spare the police and would accuse them of the witch-hunt. And if Mohammed is called to Ahmedabad by sending him a legal summons, he might destroy all the evidence. Sinha told the Bhopal team to stay put for some time and not to hurry into anything as he needs to discuss this situation with the JCP. When Govind had mentioned the name of Mohammed as one of the prime suspects, no one had fathomed that he would be a lawyer. When Sinha informed Goud about Mohammed being a lawyer and not a criminal, even he went into a pensive state of thought. After a few seconds of silence, he asked Sinha what does he think should be their next course of action. Sinha suggested that they pick up Mohammed on his way and they'll with whatever consequences come up. The JCP informed that if Mohammed is actually involved in the blasts then it won't be an issue, but if it turns out that he wasn't then we all would be great trouble. Sinha too went silent, as if agreeing to what the JCP just said. "Look Harish, I know we're simply working on the doubt of Govind, which I believe is true and Mohammed and Yunus are definitely involved in the blasts. But if our calculations go wrong, they'll demand answers from us," said JCP Goud.
Sinha, sounding like a sad child asked his boss about what should they do next. After few seconds of thinking, the JCP said, "Change the plan. We were supposed to undertake the whole operation without the knowledge of the local police. But now that this is a lawyer we're dealing with, let's take the Bhopal Police into confidence." This made Sinha happy, he informed that his batchmate Arjun Singh is posted in Bhopal and he'll get in touch with him immediately. Right after the JCP's call ended, he dialed Arjun Singh. As the person on the other side answered the called, Sinha exclaimed, "Bloody hell! You've forgotten me??" Arjun Singh too was the Deputy Commissioner of Police in Bhopal Police, who was a native of Madhya Pradesh. He was Sinha's batchmate during their training days. Which is why their conversations were always peppered with informal banter like this. Arjun Singh, on the other end of the line, recognized the voice and joined the banter by addressing his batchmate with a swear word. "Very nice! I am the one who calls you up, and I get be in a line of fire?" joked Sinha. To which Arjun Singh said, "You Biharis don't even urinate till it fulfills some need of yours. I am pretty much sure you called me for some need."
"We in Gujarat are not as fortunate as you are; you know the recent blasts, right? I am stuck in it," said Sinha as if caught red-handed.
"I did hear of it. Did you get any links?"
"Yes Arjun, I have a link, but it is your own city Bhopal. That is why I called you up. I need your help for this operation to be a success."
"A link to the blasts, from my city, Bhopal? What is it?"
Sinha then continued to explain the whole scenario to his batchmate Arjun. "I don't trust you Gujarat guys... You pick up literally anyone and claim him to be a terrorist and then kill him," said Arjun Singh. Sinha put forth many clarifications on this case as a defense and said, "trust me, we're not going to bump him off. I need your help." Arjun Singh said, "Harish what you are saying does have logic, but you don't have any evidence in your hand. And the guy you are dealing with is a lawyer. We'll be in huge trouble if this tip turns out to be a false alarm."Arjun we'll have to take this risk. My team has already reached your city. I just want you to send in a team of your men with them. Just provide this much help"
"I wouldn't have helped you if this was any other case but the blasts. But because this is a serious matter at hand and not everything needs to be done under the law, let's pick up this lawyer Mohammed, no matter what are the consequences." Before ending the call, he joked "If I am to lose my job, ensure that I get a job in your Gujarat, at least as a peon in your office." Both of them burst out laughing.
This is the forty-first part of the serialized novel "Deewal-The Story of Sabarmati Jailbreak Attempt" written by Prashant Dayal, the editor of MeraNews.com