Five terror suspects nabbed for Ahmedabad, Delhi blasts (Lead)September 24th, 2008 - 8:15 pm ICT by IANS
Mumbai, Sep 24 (IANS) Five suspected activists of the shadow terror group Indian Mujahideen have been arrested for their involvement in the Ahmedabad and Delhi serial blasts and a large cache of explosives recovered from them, Mumbai Police said Wednesday.Addressing media persons here Wednesday evening, city Police Commissioner Hasan Gafoor said the five have been arrested from “in and around Mumbai and are members of the Indian Mujahideen”.
The men were allegedly involved in the theft of vehicles used in the blasts and for providing other logistics support for carrying out the blasts. The men hailed from Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh, the police said.
The men, in their 30s, were identified as Mohammed Afzal Usmani, Mohammed Sadik Shaikh, Mohammed Zakib Shaikh, Sheikh Mohammed Ansar and Abu Rashid.
They were trained in carrying out terrorist activities in a “hostile, foreign country”, Gafoor said, but declined to name the country.
The arrested men have been linked to virtually all bomb explosions carried out in different parts of India, including the July 11, 2006, serial blasts aboard Mumbai’s suburban trains.
Usmani was responsible for the theft of four vehicles used in carrying out the blasts in Ahmedabad and planting explosives in Surat in July, Gafoor said.
Mohammed Sadik Shaikh is from Sajjanpur in Azamgarh ditrict but settled down in Cheetah Camp locality of Trombay, a north-east Mumbai suburb. An electronics programme engineer by qualification, Sadik Shaikh is said to be a high-ranking functionary in the Indian Mujahideen, the police commissioner said.
Mohammed Zahid Shaikh, also living in Cheetah Camp, is a software engineer and acquired terrorist training from the same “hostile country” in 2004, Gafoor said.
Mohammed Zakib Shaikh was caught from Mumbra, in neighbouring Thane district. A qualified electrician, he is an expert in preparing electrical circuits and was involved directly or indirectly in all bomb explosions carried out by the IM since 2005.
The police also recovered 10 kg ammonium nitrate, used in making explosives, four live electronic circuits, one submachine gun, two .38 revolvers and other weapons, said Joint Police Commissioner (Crime) Rakesh Maria.
Maria said the five masqueraded as ‘Pakistanis’ in the underground terror network, but it has been revealed that they are actually Indians. They have been trained in all aspects of terrorist activities by the HUJI (Harkat-ul-Jehad-e-Islami).
Gafoor said the threats emails sent by the IM prior to the blasts “were absolutely real”.
The Maharashtra government announced a reward of Rs.500,000 for the investigating team which helped track down and nab the terrorists. The award was announced by Deputy Chief Minister and Home Minister R.R. Patil Wednesday.