In a major counter-terror crackdown, 10 persons were arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) as it busted a suspected ISIS-inspired terror module on Wednesday after conducting simultaneous searches at 17 locations across Delhi and Uttar Pradesh. NIA said in its statement that apart from the 10 accused, some other suspects are also being examined.
The arrests on Wednesday, just ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, are among the major ones made by the NIA. Earlier in 2015, NIA had arrested over 20 men from Hyderabad and elsewhere for allegedly being part of a module that planned to carry out terror attacks in the country.
All about NIA crackdown on IS-module
ISIS-inspired module: NIA carried out searches at 17 locations in Delhi and Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday morning with “active support” of police of Delhi and Uttar Pradesh. The NIA busted the ISIS-inspired module styled as “Harkat-ul-Harb-e-Islam”.
Motive: Acting on a tip off that a group of “pro-ISIS individuals have formed a terrorist gang and are preparing to carry out terrorist attacks targeting vital installations, NIA said it carried out searches in these locations and arrested 10 persons. NIA registered a case under sections 120B, 121, 121A, 122 of IPC, Sections 4 & 5 of the Explosive Substances Act and sections 17,18,18 B, 20,38 and 39 of the UA(P) Act against the mastermind of the module.
“The inputs were further developed and field verifications were done. It was ascertained that Mufti Mohd. Suhail alias Hazrath and his associates have mobilized funds and have procured weapons, ammunition and explosive material to prepare IED’s and bombs and they plan to carry out explosions and fidayeen attacks at places of importance in and around Delhi and also target crowded places,” NIA said in its statement.
Searches: NIA yesterday carried out searches at six places in Jafrabad, Seelampur in Delhi, and 11 places in Uttar Pradesh. In UP, NIA carried out searches six places in Amroha, two places in Lucknow, two places in Hapur and one in Meerut.
Recoveries: NIA recovered huge cache of explosive material, arms and ammunition and other incriminating material and documents. NIA seized items like 25 kg of explosive material– Potassium Nitrate, Ammonium Nitrate, Sulphur, Sugar material paste. Apart from these, 12 pistols, 150 rounds of live ammunition, 112 alarm clocks, mobile phone circuits, batteries and 51 pipes were recovered.
NIA sleuths also recovered one country-made rocket launcher, remote control car triggering switch, and a wireless digital doorbell for remote switch from the possession of the accused. NIA also seized steel containers, electric wires, 91 mobile phones, 134 SIM cards, 3 laptops, knife, sword, ISIS-related literature and a cash amount of around Rs. 7.5 lakh.
Arrests: NIA arrested 29-year-old Mufti Mohd. Suhail alias Hazrath, alleged to be the mastermind of the group. He hails from Amroha and was working as Mufti in a Madrasa at Hakim Mahtab Uddin Hashmi Road in Amroha. During the arrest, he was staying at Jaffrabad, Delhi, and had tasked other team members to procure arms, explosives and other accessories to prepare IED’s and pipe-bombs.
Others arrested include Anas Yunus and Rashid Zafar Raq. While Yunus is pursuing Civil Engineering at Amity University in Noida, Rashid runs a garments business. Other accused Sayeed and Raees have welding shops in Amroha and are brothers. They made the rocket launcher and were preparing IEDs and pipe bombs. Another Zubair Malik is a student of B.A 3rd year at a University in Delhi. His brother Zaid was also arrested. Both of them were entrusted with the responsibility of procuring batteries, connectors, SIM cards on fake documents and mobilising funds for buying bomb-making material, NIA said.
Saqib helped the master-mind Mufti Mohd. Suhail in procuring weapons. Mohd. Irshad, an auto-rickshaw driver, used to arrange hideouts for keeping the material for making IED’s and bombs. Hafiz Ahmad runs a medical shop in Seelampur, Shahdara. All of them have been arrested.