Anantapur: Lodge didn’t know about the ISIS link

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The lodge manager who was on duty at the time of giving a room to the ISIS suspects said they claimed to be businessmen.

Anantapur: NIA authorities inspected a lodge in Anantapur where two of the arrested ISIS suspects stayed for two days. In fact, the NIA authorities had no plans to come to Anantapur till the arrested men revealed that two of them had stayed for two days at Anantapur and had returned on the third day without meeting anybody.

“The ISIS suspects were not even clear about the topography of Anantapur and the lodge. They just hired a room in a lodge near the APSRTC bus stand,” highly places sources said. NIA teams rushed here after they couldn’t get evidence to furnish in the case. The Nandi Lodge has no CCTV cameras even at the reception counter.

The lodge manager who was on duty at the time of giving a room to the ISIS suspects said they claimed to be businessmen. There was nothing suspicious about them and their behaviour was normal.  “We allotted Room #202 to the duo and they paid Rs 350 per day at the time of vacating the room on the third day,” he said.

The room boys in the lodge said the two were identified as ISIS suspects only after police teams raided the lodge on Wednesday.

Anantapur SP S.V. Rahasekhar Babu said security was beefed up after the stay of the two ISIS suspects at the district headquarters a week ago. “We issued a strong warning to all lodges to install CCTV cameras to avoid untoward incidents,” the SP said.

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