Islamic terrorists are leaving no stone unturned to target the Hindu festival season. After a terror cell was busted in Delhi that was looking to target festivals in the North, now WB has issued an alert about a possible terror attack during Durga Puja.
Several JMB (Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh) terrorists have been arrested in recent months by National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the Kolkata Police’s Special Investigating Team (SIT), leading to this alert.
NIA has asked the puja committees to constantly coordinate with the local police station and set up CCTVs to monitor the crowd movement. They have especially asked police and puja organizers to keep strict vigil during the immersion from October 15 to October 18.
JMB network in Bharat
In July, Kolkata Police’s SIT force arrested three JMB operatives who had entered Bharat from Bangladesh and were found staying in Haridevpur, a middle-class neighborhood in south Kolkata.
The three arrested are Naziur Rahman Powell (Pavel), Mikail Khan and Rabiul Islam. Rahman was using a Hindu name Jayram Vyapari (Bepari) to avoid detection and had also befriended Hindu women and planned to get married.
The three had rented a house claiming that they were here for medical treatment. They masqueraded as fruit and mosquito net sellers. Two other Bharatiya accused, Sheikh Sakil and Salim Munshi, allegedly helped the trio prepare fake Aadhaar cards and arranged for their accommodation.
Interrogation of the arrested trip revealed that 15 neo-JMB terrorists have sneaked into the state and 10 of them are moving around in various parts of the country, including in J&K.
As per NIA, JMB cadres run madrasas in several parts of West Bengal and from there, they identify Bharatiya girls to marry with their cadres. Once the girls are married with their cadres, other family members of the girls are recruited into the terror organisation.
The JMB, as the name suggests, originated in and split into the ‘old JMB’ and ‘neo-JMB’ factions, with the former continuing its allegiance to al-Qaeda and the latter to the ISIS. Eventually, it was the neo-JMB that gained prominence with its terrorist acts since 2013 in Bangladesh. In Nov 2019, 7 JMB terrorists were given the death sentence for the Holey Artisan Bakery terror attack in Dhaka in 2016, which killed 22 people, including Bharatiya student Tarishi Jain and a number of foreign nationals.
In Bharat, JMB garnered attention after the 2014 bomb blast in West Bengal’s Burdwan. An IED had accidentally gone off at the time of its fabrication by the terrorists, killing two of them. WB CM Mamata Banerjee had spun a bizarre conspiracy theory at the time, claiming that the Centre might have used RAW to plant the bombs.
The NIA took over the probe into the blast and arrested several people. A total of 33 accused were charge sheeted, out of which 30 accused were convicted and sentenced, to various terms, by the NIA Special Court, Kolkata. JMB chief Kausar was sentenced to 29 years imprisonment with a fine of Rs 35,000.
JMB is trying to expand its network in Assam too, “to wage jihad and fight against the Bodo (Hindus) people for protection of Muslim community.” On July 27, an NIA court in Guwahati sentenced of the outfit to different jail terms in Assam. The JMB module was unearthed after the arrest of Sahanur Alom, who hails from Barpeta, for his involvement in the Burdwan blast.
A statement by the government in Parliament in 2019 revealed that as many as of JMB were arrested in Assam over the last five years out of a total of 120 in the entire country.