by Tripti Nath in New Delhi,
India’s National Investigation Agency (NIA) have been grilling nine men on Sunday and says that they belonged to Pakistan-sponsored al-Qaeda outfit with plans to attack targets across this South Asian country.
The agency in a statement said that it had “foiled plans of multiple terror strikes in India by the suspects. They would be produced before the courts in West Bengal and Kerala to seek permission for custodial interrogation.
“NIA had learnt about an inter-state module of al-Qaeda operatives at various locations in India, including West-Bengal and Kerala. The group was planning to undertake terrorist attacks at vital installations in India with an aim to kill innocent people and strike terror,” said the release of the NIA, national counter terrorism law enforcement agency.
While six terrorists were arrested from Bengal, three terrorists were arrested from Kerala in the early morning raids on Saturday, it added. They were associated with Pakistan sponsored module of Al-Qaeda.
“Large quantity of incriminating materials including digital devices, documents, jihadi literature, sharp weapons, country-made firearms, a locally fabricated body armour, articles and literature used for making home-made explosive devices have been seized from their possession,” the NIA said, adding that ” as per preliminary investigation, these individuals had been radicalised by Pakistan-based Al-Qaeda terrorists on social media and were motivated to undertake attacks at multiple places including Delhi-National Capital Region.”
The module was “actively indulging in fund-raising and a few members of gang were planning to travel to Delhi to procure arms and ammunition,” as per the initial investigation. For this purpose, the module was actively indulging in fund raising and a few members of gang were planning to travel to New Delhi to procure arms and ammunition. These arrests have pre-empted possible terrorist attacks in various parts of the country.”
NIA has registered a case and initiated investigation.
The arrested men are — Murshid Hasan, Iyakub Biswas, Mosaraf Hossen, currently residents of Ernakulam and Najmus Sakib, Abu Sufiyan, Mainul Mondal, Leu Yean Ahmed, Al Mamun Kamal and Atitur Rehman, residents of Murshidabad in West Bengal.
Six of those held from Murshidabad district belong to its areas bordering Bangladesh, such as Jalangi, Domkol and Raninagar, and were known to be religious, media reports said
India’s worst Jihadi terrorist attack by Pakistani-backed Lashkar-e-Taiba in 2008 was in Bombay. At least 174 people died, including 9 attackers, and more than 300 were wounded between 26 November and 29 November, 2008.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) was created by an Act of Parliament, the NIA Act, 2008 in following the Mumbai Terror Attack (MTA) on November 26, 2008, for investigation and prosecution of offences affecting sovereignty, security and integrity of India.