Top terror recruiter arrested formally

via Pioneer News Service | Kannur published on November 3, 2008

The newly formed special anti-terror squad of the Kerala Police on Monday formally arrested Mujeeb (28) of Mouvanchery, Chakkarakkal, Kannur after the officials were convinced of his terror links following six days of intense interrogation in a secret facility. With this those put under arrest for terror operations so far by the squad headed in Kannur by S Sreejith, Superintendent of Police, rose to three, the others being NDF activist Abdul Jaleel and terror recruiter Muhammad Faizal.

Sources in the police confirmed that Mujeeb, like Faizal, was a recruiter of young men from Kerala for the terror outfits based in Pakistan. He was taken into custody by the Kollam police from his wife’s house in Ochira on October 28. Mujeeb had gone into hinding just when the police were observing his activities as per the information received by them during the interrogation of the others arrested.

The Superintendent of Police, Kollam, later handed him over to Sreejith. Sources confirmed that Mujeeb had recruited several young men from Kannur for terror outfits. The hunt for two other top Lashkar-e-Taiba recruiters, Nazeer of Neerchal, Kannur and Ibrahim Moulvi of Vellamunda, Wayanad district, were still on, and sources said they could fall into the police net anytime. Officials indicated that Mujeeb was an associate of Nazeer and Ibrahim Moulvi in recruiting young men to be sent to Pakistan for training in terror operations.

Sources suspected that Jaleel, Faizal and Ninar of Thayyil, Kannur, who was already in custody but yet to be arrested formally, were sub-agents functioning under the top recruiter-trio of Nazeer, Ibrahim Moulvi and Mujeeb. However, a clear picture would emerge only after further investigations. But the police had already got convincing information that the four Malayalee ultras — Muhammad Yasin, Muhammad Fayaz, Muhammad Faiz and Abdul Raheem — killed by security forces in Kashmir last month had been recruited by the Nazeer-Ibrahim-Mujeeb trio.

The police were of the belief that Nazeer, trained in terror operations in Pakistan and elsewhere, was the seniormost recruiter in Kannur. Ibrahim Moulvi was mostly in charge of taking classes for recruited and prospective recruited young men, by traveling all over the State. Sources in the police said that they had got evidences to prove that he had organised classes in Kannur city, Neerchal, Thana and Maithanappally. They said that Ibrahim Moulvi, who had married a girl from Kappad, used to visit her house regularly.

Meanwhile, the Jammu and Kashmir Police handed over the bodies of the four Malayalaee militants killed by security forces in Kupwara sector while trying to sneak into Pakistan early October to the Lalpura Masjid Committee. The relatives of the killed terror operatives, Yasin, Fayaz, Faiz and Raheem, had refused to receive the bodies despite the Jammu and Kashmir Police’s offer to hand over them.

At the same time, Islamist organisation NDF and Adbul Nasser Madani’s PDP, presently under the shadow of suspicion in the context of the Kerala Police’s terror hunt, launched pre-emptive campaigns to project themselves as peace-loving outfits. The NDF held a massive demonstration followed by a public meeting in Kannur, in which hundreds of activists participated asking the Government “not to destroy Kerala by creating terror”. Senior leaders of the organisation addressed the participants at the public meeting.

PDP’s working chairman Poonthura Siraj alleged that the Indian Union Muslim League, the second largest constituent of the Congress-led Opposition UDF in Kerala, was responsible for the growth of extremism in the State. He demanded an intense probe into the sources of funds the Muslim League had been receiving from abroad. Siraj also wanted the Government to launch an investigation into the frequent (once in a week) visits abroad by Muslim League leaders.

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