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Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Delhi terror bust: Maha ATS nabs terrorist from jihad-hotspot Mumbra

Continuing its probe into the terror module busted by the Delhi Police last week, the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) on Monday said it has arrested one more suspect from Thane’s Mumbra town, while another is absconding and is now wanted.

The ATS nabbed Rizwan Ibrahim Momin (40) and charged him under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) for criminal conspiracy, along with the others, to carry out terror strikes.

Momin’s name cropped up during the interrogation of Zakir Hussain Shaikh (45), who was arrested from Mumbai’s Jogeshwari suburb on Saturday for alleged links with the 6 accused nabbed by Delhi Police Special Cell last week.

Two of those 6 terrorists had received training in Pakistan from notorious Pakistani intelligence agency ISI. One of them, Jan Mohammad Shaikh is a resident of Dharavi in Mumbai. The module was allegedly planning to carry out blasts across the country during the Hindu festival season.

The ATS suspects that the duo of Shaikh and Momin was in touch with their handlers in Pakistan, and have also lodged a terror complaint against another absconder, identified as Anthony alias Anwar alias Anas, stated to be abroad.

The ATS said that after learning of Shaikh’s arrest, Momin disposed off a mobile phone on which they used to communicate with each other. After securing details of his involvement, the ATS swooped at his Mumbra residence and nabbed him Sunday. During his questioning, Momin revealed that he had destroyed Shaikh’s mobile phone which was recovered in three pieces from a drain near his home. Further investigations are on.

The Muslim-dominated Mumbra in Thane district is fast becoming a terrorist hotspot. In 2019, six terrorists inspired by Zakir Naik and with links to IS (Islamic State) who had formed terror org ‘Ummat-E-Mohammaddiya’ were arrested before they could execute their plans of poisoning the prasad given out to devotees at the ancient Mumbreshwar temple.

The accused underwent training for making explosives and poison and participated in blast trials at a hill near the Mumbra bypass. They were also planning other mass casualty attacks by mixing poisonous chemical mixtures in water and food at public gatherings.

Mumbra’s MLA is the controversial NCP leader Jitender Awhad, also the state’s Minister for Housing, who allegedly had a civil engineer brutally assaulted last year by his goons over an FB post.

In a viral video, Awhad was heard telling a cheering crowd in his constituency, “Allah knew in 2011 itself that the world would be hit by the deadly coronavirus in 2020 and therefore we had built the graveyard in time.” Little wonder then that Muslim youth of Mumbra are proving easy to brainwash & radicalise for terrorist handlers.

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