NEW DELHI: The Delhi Police Special Cell has arrested a Pakistani national from East Delhi’s Laxmi Nagar area who was planning an attack in the national capital during the festival season.
Police recovered one AK47 with two magazines and 60 rounds, two sophisticated pistols with 50 rounds and a hand grenade.
The suspected terrorist was identified as Mohammad Ashraf alias Ali Ahmad Noor, resident of Pakistan’s Punjab. He came to India through the Bangladesh-Siliguri route and was hiding for more than a decade with a fake Indian identity. He was living in Shastri Nagar under the cover of a Peer Baba Maulana who has a large number of followers.
DCP (Special Cell) Pramod Singh Kushwaha said, “Specific information was received that a Pakistan national is staying in Laxmi Nagar. A Special Cell team was deployed and they arrested Ashraf. Based on interrogation, raids were carried out in and around the Trans Yamuna area.”
Preliminary interrogation revealed he had been acting as a head of sleeper cell nodes in India and had been assigned to carry out attacks during the festive season.
“In 2004, he was trained by an ISI handler with the code name of Nasir in Sialkot. Nasir motivated him to work as a sleeper cell for subversive activities in India. After completion of his training, Ashraf entered India and befriended a maulvi in Ajmer,” Kushwaha said.
In 2006, he came to Delhi to the factory of a relative of the maulvi and started Tilawat (daily wages prayer job) in factories in that locality. He was receiving money from Western Union Money Transfer through the IDs of the maulvi’s relatives, said officials. They added that he was in regular touch with Nasir through different secure communication channels.
Recently, he was tasked to orchestrate terror strikes during the festival season. The recovered arms and ammunition were arranged by his handler to carry out these activities.
He is suspected to be involved in terror strikes in J&K and other parts of India, said Kushwaha. An FIR under relevant sections has been registered against the accused. Further investigation case is in progress.