Bangladeshi national among 8 detained for terrorism links: UP ATS

The Uttar Pradesh Police Counter-Terrorism Squad (ATS) on Monday claimed to have arrested eight people for their alleged links to terrorist groups Al-Qaeda in the Indian subcontinent, Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) and l ‘Ansarul Islam.

ATS officials said they learned of the accused’s alleged association with the groups after the National Investigation Agency (NIA) recently arrested three terrorists in Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh.

Of the eight people arrested, five are from UP, one from Uttarakhand, one from Jharkhand and one from Bangladesh. They were identified as Luqman, Qari Mukhtar, Kamil and Mohammad Aleem from Saharanpur; Shahzad of Shamli; Nawazish Ansari from Jharkhand, Mudassir from Uttarakhand and Ali Noor aka Jahangir Mandal aka Inamul Haque from Bangladesh, ATS said in a press release.

Mobile phones, jihadist literature, USB drives and other items were recovered there, it was claimed.

The Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order), Prashant Kumar, said those arrested were facing various charges including the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA). While Luqman was arrested last month, the other defendants were taken into custody on October 5 and 6, Kumar said.

ATS said they had been receiving reports for some time that terrorist groups Al Qaeda in the Indian subcontinent or Al Qaeda Barr E Sagir and its affiliated organization JMB were trying to expand their network in India.

Security agencies have identified terrorist modules from Bangladesh in this regard. In March this year, the NIA arrested two Bangladeshi nationals – Ahsan and Aqeel Ahmed Shaikh – and Mufkikar, alias Samid Ali Mia in August in a case filed in Bhopal. The central agency is looking for his associate Abdullah Talha, alias Mufti Hussain.

All of the arrested men are related to each other, except for Bangladeshi nationals arrested by the NIA, the ATS said.

“Luqman allegedly joined a terrorist organization after Aleem introduced him to Bangladeshi nationals Ahsan and Mufkikar. The defendants used Luqman Madrasa in Saharanpur as a hiding place. Abdullah Talha, a fugitive, remained in his madrasa for about 11 months and was paid as a madrasa teacher,” the statement read.

Shahzad had remained in Bhopal with other defendants Ahsan, Luqman and Qari Mukhtar, it was claimed. Shahzad was arrested last year by Shamli police for allegedly preparing a bomb.

Mudassir, who was arrested at the Indo-Nepal border at Rupaidiha of Bahraich, is accused of arranging the stay of fugitive Abdullah Talha and Ali Noor in Haridwar, according to the press release. Talha allegedly gave Rs 80,000 to Mudassir for terrorist activities, it is claimed.

“Ali Noor who was arrested with Mudassir had previously stayed with another suspected terrorist in Assam. He was then working as a teacher to hide his true identity. Abdullah had used Kamil’s bank account to receive Rs 2.50 lakh for the terrorist financing. Aleem had introduced Luqman, Shahzad and Qari Mukhtar to Ahsan, a national of Bangladesh. Nawazish Ansari was introduced to other defendants by Aqeel Ahmed Sheikh,” the ATS press release reads.

Qari Mukhtar was an associate of Ahsan, Mufkikar, Luqman, Aleem and Shahzad, he added.

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