Five with alleged links to Al Qaeda group arrested in Assam


Bhaskar, director general of police, said five people, including a Bangladeshi national, were arrested on suspicion of having links with a jihadi group based in the neighboring country. Al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) hails from Barpeta district in Assam. Jyoti Mahanta said on Saturday.


Mahanta said that based on an intelligence report shared by the special branch of the state police, Barpeta police arrested five people from areas under Howlyand Kalgachia police station.


The DG said the arrests could be made with the cooperation of Muslim citizens of Assam, whom he praised for not responding to extremist messages.


According to police, the Bangladeshi national, identified as Md Suman alias Saiful Islam, had tried to persuade four others to use Barpeta as a base for AQIS jihadist activities.


The DGP said several other members of the group were still at large and efforts were on to nab them.


Intelligence reports about the presence of Islam in the state had been received since September last year, and police finally managed to find and arrest him and his accomplices last night. He was produced in court on Saturday and handed over to police for further investigation.


Mahanta claimed that after the arrest of Ansarul Islam leader by the Bangladesh police, Islam was deployed by the organization to spread the message of jihad and to train young potential members in different parts of Assam.


Islam, a resident of Dhakaliapara Para village in Bangladesh’s Naraynaganj district, worked as a teacher in his village mosque but also as a talent scout, traveling “with the intention of recruiting potential candidates for his extremist organization”.


Four others arrested are Khairul Islam, Badshah Suleiman Khan, Nowshad Ali and Taimur Rehman Khan.


Police recovered documents along with jihadi literature and several electronic devices including mobiles, laptops, pen drives and more.


“The organization’s operations are very sophisticated and use computers for communication, including money transfers. It involves very modern and high quality technology,” the DGP said.


Group members advocate that people should sacrifice themselves for Islam and the Qur’an and not for their country or their society. However, they have not been very successful in Assam because the Muslims living in the state We do not respond to such thoughts or messages, nor do we encourage them, “he said.


“In fact, it was with the help and cooperation of the Muslims of the state that they were apprehended and I thank them for that,” he added. I also urge people of all faiths to help protect the state from such elements.

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