Prof attack: NIA intensifies probe against absconding Popular front terrorists

published on May 3, 2011

Prof attack: NIA intensifies probe
VR Jayaraj | Kochi – Daily Pioneer

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has intensified its probe into the July 4 Taliban-model Islamist attack on Prof TJ Joseph of Muvattupuzha, Kerala. As part of this, agency officials visited Muvattupuzha and recorded statements of the professor, his family members and neighbours.

Sources said that the agency was already in receipt of convincing clues on the foreign links of the accused and their sources of funds. All the 54 accused in the case are activists of Islamist organization Popular Front of India (PFI) and its political wing Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI).

The NIA had also intensified the search for the absconding accused, sources said. Of the 54 accused, only 27 have been arrested so far. The agency has launched a massive hunt for MK Nasser of Aluva near Kochi, key accused in the case and main conspirator behind the brutal attack on the professor.

A six-member NIA team headed by DySP Tajuddin from Hyderabad visited Muvattupuzha the other day and recorded statements of the professor, his sister Stella and son Mithun separately. They were also taken to the spot where the Islamists had attacked the professor as part of the examinations.

The Islamists had cut off the right hand of Joseph, a Malayalam professor of Church-run Newman College of Thodupuzha in Idukki district on July 4 last when he was returning home with his mother and sister after attending Sunday mass at a local church. They attacked him for preparing a question paper that allegedly blasphemed Prophet Muhammad.

The attackers had thrown the hand of the professor to a compound nearby. The NIA officials took the statement of the owner of the compound also. They also interviewed Prof MC Joseph, a retired college professor and neighbour of the attacked professor, who had helped in taking him to the hospital.

The NIA officials had met the professor twice earlier. Sources said the agency had got vital information about the elements that had been providing financial and material help to the accused Islamists. The NIA has also received the case files from the special Kerala Police team headed by Unnirajan, SP, that had earlier probed the case.

On April 27, the NIA had told the Special CBI Court in Kochi that the 27 absconding accused in the case had been getting help from three Muslim organizations outside the State, following which the court gave permission to it for the follow-up probe. According to the agency, these outfits were based in Chennai and Thirunalveli and Hyderabad

The Crime Branch of the Kerala Police had earlier found that some of the accused in the case had connections with certain organizations in these cities in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. The NIA said that the Tamil Nadu Police Department had already agreed to provide all necessary assistance to the agency.

The agency had formally filed the FIR in the case at the Special CBI Court in Kochi on April 8 naming 54 persons as accused as part of the preparatory legal procedures for launching the follow-up investigation into the case. The Kerala Police had filed the chargesheet in the case on January 14 naming the same 54 persons as accused.

The Kerala Police also had found that the accused had dubious overseas connections and had suspicious sources of funds. The Union Home Ministry had instructed the NIA to take over the case on an appeal from the Kerala Government as the State police were not competent to go into such aspects.

Welcome to Haindava Keralam! Register for Free or Login as a privileged HK member to enjoy auto-approval of your comments and to receive periodic updates.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 characters available

4 × three =


Latest Articles from Kerala Focus

Did You Know?