KOCHI: Confirming security agencies’ belief that Kerala has become safe haven for terrorist elements, National Investigation Agency (NIA) on August 3 nabbed Mustafizur Rahman, 35, of Birbhum Village, and Abdul Karim of Murshidabad of West Bengal, who were posing as migrant labourers, from Kottakkal in Malappuram. They are the prime accused in a blast and IED planting case at Bodhgaya in Bihar on January 20, 2018 and allegedly belong to Jama’at-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB).
NIA sources told Express Mustafizur has been staying with a group of migrant labourers in Kottakkal doing various jobs. Though NIA was on the tail of the suspects involved in the crime, terrorists’ plan to hole up in Kerala as migrant labourers got exposed when intelligence agencies traced certain leads through a coordinated effort.The incident has come a shocker to Kerala Police as central intelligence agency suspects Mustafizur planned and executed the operation while staying in Kerala.
It was only three months ago that Mustafizur brought Abdul Karim to Kottakkal. According to NIA sources, the duo were working in small industrial units located in Kottakkal. After recording their arrest, both were produced before NIA Judge M Nandakumar at his residence in Kochi on Saturday night and were taken to Patna by flight on Sunday.
State Police Chief Loknath Behera confirmed the arrest and said it was made possible because of the timely sharing of intelligence.Jama’at-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh is a banned terror outfit both in India and Bangladesh. NIA said the JMB had planted explosives at Mahabodhi temple in Bodh Gaya to avenge the atrocities against Rohingyas in Myanmar.
To trigger a blast
The plot was to trigger a blast when the Dalai Lama was visiting the Buddhist shrine. Intelligence agencies suspect the involvement of more Bangladesh natives in the case
Police on the chase
Intelligence agencies and Kerala Police have been busting sleeper modules of extremist groups over the past couple of years.
Given the rising influx of labourers from other states, the challenge for the police to track down criminals among them has increased manifold.
State police chief Loknath Behera said they have been coordinating with other agencies to keep tabs on their movement
Top Maoist leaders, including Beecha Suguna and Malla Raji Reddy, were nabbed from Kerala over the past few years