The central intelligence agencies probing the antecedents of the Mangaluru blast accused Mohammed Shariq and his connections in Tamil Nadu, have found that he had met the Coimbatore car blast accused Jamesha Mubeen in September.
Police found out that the duo had met at Siringanellur in Tamil Nadu.
Notably, Mohammed Shariq had stayed at a dormitory in Coimbatore and had secured a SIM card using the identity of his dormitory mate, Surendran, a private school teacher from Udhagamandalam. Surendran is in police custody.
The agencies are probing who all he had met and whether he received any help from Coimbatore and other areas of Tamil Nadu other than Surendran helping him procure a SIM card.
Investigations are also on to ascertain whether he had any role in the October 23 Deepavali eve car blast in Coimbatore in which Jamesha Mubeen was charred to death.
Six other accomplices of the deceased Mubeen were arrested under UAPA and lodged in Coimbatore central prison.
It may be noted that one of the arrested is Mohammed Talka who is the nephew of S.A. Basha, founder of Al Umma, the Islamic terror organisation involved in the Coimbatore serial blasts of 14 February 1998 in which 56 people died and more than 200 grievously injured.
The NIA and Central agencies have questioned a few people in certain pockets of the state to get more details on whether any support system had worked for Mohammed Shariq. After the ban of the Islamist organisation, Popular Front of India (PFI) in September 2022, some small organisations owing allegiance to Islamic ideology surfaced in some parts of Tamil Nadu, including Coimbatore.
The agencies are probing whether Mohammed Shariq had interacted with any of these six accused in the Coimbatore car blast case other than Jamesha Mubeen.
Tamil Nadu police have also taken into custody a few people in Chennai, Coimbatore, Tiruchi, and Madurai after the Mangaluru blasts and an investigation is on to see whether these people had provided any support to Mohammed Shariq.
A senior officer with Tamil Nadu police told IANS that those taken for questioning were involved in some nefarious activities earlier and had shown allegiance with some Islamic groups and movements including the banned PFI.
Md. Shariq hails from Shivamogga district in Karnataka and was living in a rented house in Mysuru using a stolen Hindu identity. He had also radicalized two young Muslim engineers to carry out trial explosions on the banks of Tungabhadra River in Hale Gurupura region of Shivamogga. He also had links with Mateen Ahmed Taha, who is said to be a member of ‘Al Hind ISIS’, which manages the terror outfit’s activities in Karnataka.
Shariq had also visited Aluva in Kerala on several occasions and had reportedly procured raw materials to make an IED while staying there, including some electronics components ordered through Amazon.
In August, third-year engineering student Mir Anas Ali from Ambur, Tamil Nadu was arrested for planning a terror attack after contacting terror outfit IS (Islamic State). A few days before his arrest, three men were arrested for IS links from Erode and Salem.
In October, Hyderabad police arrested a person accused in past terrorist incidents and his two fresh recruits. They seized a consignment of 4 grenades from the Malakpet residence of Abdul Zahed, who reportedly revived his contacts with Pakistani ISI conduits to carry out sensational terror attacks in Hyderabad. Zahed and his recruits, Mohammad Sameeuddin and Maaz Hasan Farooq, were planning to target Hindu devotees during Ganesh Chaturthi festival celebrations.
The growing nexus of Islamic terrorists and radicals in Dakshin Bharat should worry every right-thinking citizens. The fact that most of these terrorists are bright, educated young men should bury the false notion of terrorism being caused by illiteracy and/or lack of economic opportunity, once and for all.
Central intelligence agencies like NIA are doing an exemplary job in busting these terror modules that are popping up all the time. But our judiciary seems to be marching to a different beat altogether, and is often giving bail or acquitting terror accused on dubious grounds, and some state governments driven by vote-bank politics are also diluting the collective response needed to combat this existential threat.
When will our Republic recognize the ideologies that are fundamentally opposed to our civilization and way of life?
(With IANS inputs)