Burdhwan’s real agenda- A Greater Bangladesh

brihot-bangladesh-bangistan-or-gr-bangladeshIndia in its dossier to Bangladesh on the Burdhwan incident will make it clear the these terrorist groups working under different names had planned on establishing a Greater Bangladesh which merges Bangladesh with West Bengal. As a first step they intended setting up modules in West Bengal, Meghalaya and Assam in a bid to create several mini Bangladeshs’ and then take the plan to next level.

Further India also speaks about two main training camps of the JMB based in Bandarban and Chittagong which are being used as launch pads to set up modules in India especially in West Bengal. These cadres land up in Madhyan Gram and then move to various parts of the state before they set up their modules, India’s dossier states.

In the dossier while India would give the status report on the National Investigating Agency probe, it would also point to the splinter groups within Bangladesh which are making the setting up of such modules a possibility within India.

India has listed the names of several splinter groups which are working for the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh the militant wing of the Jamaat-e-Islami. The Ansarulla Bangla, Jamayatul Muslimeen, Hepajat Islam and the Tanzim Tamiruddin are the splinter groups which are offering support to the Jamaat and this needs to be checked by the Bangladesh government.

Further the dossier also states that these groups are taking advantage of the political situation in Bangladesh and this has added to the problem and made these terror groups strong. Also Bangladesh will be told about the Al-Qaeda in the Sub Continent which calls for the establishment of a caliphate with the help of Bangladesh militant groups specifically. Bangladesh will also be told about the landing of the Rohingya Muslims on their soil in a bid to set up a stronger network.

The dossier further speaks about the camps in Bandarban and also in Chittagong and says that these camps need to be neutralized in order to clip the wings of these terror groups. People are trained here and sent to West Bengal, Meghalaya and Assam and in turn they are setting up modules. While these camps need to be decimated it is also needs for strong cooperation along the border areas to stop the infilration, the dossier would also state.

The socio-economic-political situation is also being taken advantage of while carrying out the infiltration and joint efforts between the two Intelligence agencies and also the Border forces would be the need of the hour to prevent any further influx. Terror groups are using socio-economic and political conditions to infiltrate their members into India. During the questioning of the several operatives it has come to light that the political instability and the need to set up an Islamic state is what has prompted these modules to become more aggressive.

Further much better cooperation between the two nations on intelligence sharing is needed as the JMB has also been in talks with the Al-Qaeda to establish a Greater Bangladesh. The meeting of some operatives of the JMB with the members of the Al-Qaeda who have set up their sub continent wing headquarters in Pakistan also finds a mention in the document. The Al-Qaeda has a better network in this part of the world and hence the JMB decided to join hands with the AQ to realise their cause for a Greater Bangladesh.

 

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Al-Qaeda pamphlets, old wine in new bottle

simiThe discovery of a pamphlet by the West Bengal Intelligence Agencies which is now shared with the Central Intelligence Bureau speaks about terror groups coming under one banner and establishing a Caliphate. An officer with the Intelligence Bureau in New Delhi who is scrutinizing the document says while being able to verify the document as a genuine one, it goes on to show the larger intent of these groups.

The pamphlets have been printed and circulated a couple of days after the Al-Qaeda in the Sub-Continent made a call to impose the Sharia law in Bangladesh, Assam and West Bengal through its magazine, Resurgence. The wording in the pamphlet and also the message sent out by the AQIS is similar and speaks about how an Islamic State ought to be established by using the existing modules in Bangladesh, West Bengal and Assam.

The official says on reading the pamphlet one gets to understand that the Al-Qaeda wants to use the platform of the Al-Jihad which comprises the SIMI and the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh as well in order to establish its caliphate. It finds the urgent need to establish one as it had been beaten by the ISIS which was the first to declare the establishment of such a caliphate. The officer said that they propose to use the modules in Bangladesh, Assam and West Bengal which are directly inter-linked and they also feel that the easy infiltration between these places makes the job only easier for them. In the future the Al-Jihad also proposes to spread its wings into Odisha, Jharkhand, Bihar. Further the Al-Jihad also proposes to rope in the Rohingya Muslims from Burma in order to establish this caliphate.

The officer says that this is just the first step of the Al-Qaeda to set up the caliphate. The idea of a caliphate has attracted several youth especially in the case of the ISIS and the implementation of the Sharia law is even more attractive to spruce up the recruitments.

The talk about establishing this caliphate was first found when the Burdwan module was busted. Literature related to the Al-Qaeda proposing to operate under the banner of the Al-Jihad was found in the house at Burdwan where bombs were being made. Now with the lid blown off these pamphlets are being distributed aggressively to raise the sagging morale of the cadres who are down following the busting of this entire operation, the IB official also points out.

IB officials are tracking the routes of this pamphlet and say that this has been locally printed. They have printed over 3000 such pamphlets to be distributed in several states. Inter linking the above mentioned states is the main idea in a bid to implement the Sharia law. The pamphlet on scrutiny suggests that they wanted to overthrow the Awami League as they accuse it of cozying up to India and making Bangladesh almost a Hindu state.

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Burdhwan- More than what meets the eye

05de261There is more than what meets the eye in the Burdhwan blast case.The Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen, Bangladesh has raised its ugly head once again and appears to have been given a breather thanks to the lackluster attitude of the West Bengal government.

Animesh Roul,  Executive Director, Society for Study of Peace and Conflict says that this outfit has flourished with the help of local support. In this interview Roul says that unchecked influx of Bangladeshi Muslims created pockets of influence for political parties in West Bengal.

 

What are your first impressions on the entire Burdhwan incident?

Since the incident took place in early October, at Khagragarh, Burdwan (West Bengal), this was evidently clear (to me and perhaps many others) that the event has a strong link with the Bangladesh based organizations, either Jamaat ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) and Harakat-ul-Jihad-ul-Islami-Bangladesh (HUJI-B), both of which can trace their lineage Jamaat e Islami. More plausibly, this is the handiwork of remnants of these groups who have been hiding on the Indian side of the border. Most of the fugitive militants have taken refuge in West Bengal, Assam and Meghalaya, taking advantage of porous borders and large migrant populations from the neighboring country.

Now it is getting clearer that JMB’s operatives were involved. NIA investigation is heading towards right direction. However, selective disclosure to the media or wild speculations could be damaging, especially the alleged assassination plots in Bangladesh. This was in their agenda since 2011. So not surprising enough and as a matter of fact these groups have no capability to do that now. Yes serial crude bombings like in August 2005 could be a possibility. When anything like this (burdwan incident) happens, we always should take into account of local support that provided access to material, and other logistics. And also I think , this could be one of the many modules presently operating in India, whether they have ties with Indian separatists’ militant groups like KLO or ULFA factions etc.

Do you think the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen (Bangladesh) was given a breather by the West Bengal government?

Of course these people are hiding in West Bengal, knowing that there is hardly any threat to their existence for various Socio-political and security reasons, some of them are unaware government and complacent security apparatus. As a matter of fact, West Bengal government is virtually clueless about the impending threats and why Bangladesh militant groups strive for Greater Bangladesh by merging the present West Bengal and some other region with their country. And the continuous influx of illegal Bengali speaking Muslim populations from other side of the border and opportunities to settle down in India, would be detrimental in future. For example, a place called Madhaym Gram in West Bengal (there are other hotspots) has most Bangladeshi migrants with easy access to ration card and other social benefits. This unchecked influx of Bangladeshi Muslims created pockets of influence for political parties in West Bengal.

There are many mini-Bangladesh in the state, but nothing to blame present government, the story of appeasement and vote bank politics goes back to decades long communist regimes. Mamta Banerjee government is just managing the legacy fearing backlash and of course the fear of the losing support base and recently gained power. When political infighting and confrontation between rival parties happen, Islamic radical groups thrive in this chaotic situation. Same situation is prevailing in both West Bengal and Bangladesh.
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ISIS- Now a former Google employee

hydterMunawad Salman, the former Google employee held for allegedly trying to join the ISIS wanted to be part of the social media wing of the group in Iraq. The ISIS was adopting the same modus operandi that they did in Chennai in this case as well. The ISIS which has four units in Saudi only to target Indians had been in touch with Salman for several months now. They had got him a job in Saudi and he was to leave there on a work permit before joining the ISIS in Iraq, police sources informed.

This was the same modus operandi that the ISIS followed in the case of Tamil Nadu operative Haja Fakkruddin who was first flown out of India on a work permit to Singapore before being launched into the ISIS wing in Sryria.

As per his interrogation, Munawad who hails from Hyderabad was attracted towards the ISIS and felt that they were serious about establishing the Global Islamic Council and hence decided to volunteer run the social network for the outfit.

His arrest by the Hyderabad police indicates a turf war between the ISIS and the Al-Qaeda with both operatives targeting the same turf to get youth enrolled into their outfit. According to his questioning Salman had been attracted to the cause of the ISIS since the outfit became aggressive in Iraq. The ISIS has been making calls through its various touts for Indians especially to join them. Police sources confirm that there are at least four agencies in Saudi Arabia which are luring youth from India to join the ISIS. The police also say that he was in touch with these touts in Saudi Arabia for the past two months and had set his eyes on joining the ISIS to part of their social media wing. The ISIS has been trying to replicate an Al-Shabab kind of wing which is run by the Al-Qaeda and feels that with the battle heaeting up there is an urgent need for more youth to run the social media wing.

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In Hyderabad- AQIS vs ISIS

Mecca Masjid blast site. Photo courtesy: Outlook

Central Intelligence Agencies and the Hyderabad police say that the war in Hyderabad is between the Al-Jihad and the Ansar-ul-Tawhid. The police who have been questioning alleged operatives of both these groups have discovered that all the conversations between them and their handlers indicate that the real battle is not to be fought in India, but in Afghanistan. We need to be battle ready and take over Afghanistan was the message sent to these youth both by the Al-Qaeda and the ISIS.

The Al-Jihad a composition of the SIMI, Jamaat-e-Islami and the Al-Qaeda is battling the Ansar-ul-Tawhid comprising the Indian Mujahideen, Tehrik-e-Taliban and the ISIS. Both these groups are trying to outdo each other in a bid to spruce up the recruitments and Hyderabad and parts of South India have become potential targets for these two groups.

The Hyderabad police have been questioning youth from both these outfits who have revealed that they have been given orders to push for recruitments in a big way. The idea is to be battle ready and the ISIS in particular has said that they do not intend terror strikes in India immediately, but the plan was to have more members keeping the future in mind.

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Burdhwan to Assam

The National Investigating Agency probing the Burdhwan blast case will also focus on the role of some elements in Assam and Meghalaya as well. NIA sources informed that there are a large number of militants who have taken refuge in Assam following the crack down after the Burdhwan incident came to light. As per the preliminary investigation and the questioning of the 6 youth who were arrested two days back it has been learnt that Assam was a back module which was used as a safe hide out for infiltrators before launching them into West Bengal to be part of the main stream module.

The Assam police will share information with the NIA regarding the role of some NGO’S who had allegedly helped the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh set up modules in Assam as well. At least 8 NGOs are under the scanner which acted as fronts to set up cells in Assam.

The JMB used a two pronged strategy for this operation. They infiltrated their militants numbering nearly 180 since the past four years and divided them into batches. The main modules were based in West Bengal while the hideouts were mainly set in Barapeta, NIA sources also claim. Like in the case of West Bengal some local leaders were seen to be helping this group. The BJP had accused the AIUDF of aiding the militants but this claim was denied.

Moreover the arrest of six youth from Assam have given the agencies more to work on. They have told their investigators that they were kept on standby. They said that they were trained by the JMB for the same operation. They claimed that they had first infiltrated into West Bengal ‘s madhyam gram where they obtained documents. They were then sent to Assam where they told to be on stand-by. What the Assam module was asked to do is to shield operatives. NIA officials beleive that several JMB members could have first fled to Assam taken cover and then moved to Bangladesh after this entire episode broke out.

The NIA would also probe the local links in Assam. There are a few NGO’s run by local politicians which are under the scanner. Some seperatist groups too are being investigated and have been accused of helping infiltrators since several years. Assam militant groups have been aiding groups from Bangladesh especially the Harkat-ul-Jihadi Islami for several years. It was with this support that the HUJI-B managed to set up its module in Hyderabad which was headed by Shahid Bilal.

Terror in West Bengal and Assam have been inter-connected for’ several years now says an Intelligence Bureau official. Similar groups such as the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh and the HUJI-B which function out of Bangladesh have used both Assam and West Bengal to further their operations. Recently even the Chief Minister of Assam had said there is credible Intelligence regarding the Al-Qaeda trying to set base in Assam. The Al-Qaeda in fact is a partner to both the HUJI-B and the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh.

 

Dossier:

ndia will send the preliminary findings into the Burdhwan blast to Bangladesh which has sought information the case. The Intelligence Agencies of the two countries are already sharing information on the case.

The preliminary findings of the NIA which states that there were 58 modules of the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh operating in West Bengal will be shared with Bangladesh.

Apart from this India will also be sharing the names of 8 key operatives including Kausar who are believed to have fled to Bangladesh after the episode came to light. India’s dossier will be examined by Bangladesh who on their part would help hunt down the operatives. The dossier will also reveal details of the financing which took place and the NIA says that a lot of money was diverted from a bank in Bangladesh and then routed to Kuwait before it came to the modules in West Bengal.

It is at a preliminary stage now and we are giving final touches to the report. The dossier will also speak about the need to have heightened security between the two countries along the border. India will also send the forensic evidence that it has collected during the probe.

The NSA who fisted West Bengal yesterday held talks with the administration and said that this goes beyond a law and order problem. However what the NSA also found that there were still 138 modules of the JMB still in Bangladesh which needed to shut down by Bangladesh. It also points out the need to ensure that JMB members do not escape from Bangladesh and take shelter in India.

Burdhwan- 5 consignments were moved

IMG_0066As the investigating agencies continue their questioning of several suspects in the Burdhwan blast including Shaikh Yusuf, it has found that in the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen, Bangladesh (JMB) had moved four consignments of bombs to Bangladesh in the years 2013 and 2014.

Officers privy to the investigation informed that the bombs prepared in West Bengal in the past two years had moved in five separate consignments across the border and have reached Bangladesh. Investigators say that in these consignment around 60 bombs both sophisticated and crude ones were moved.

Operatives such as Kausar and Shaikh Yusuf had played a vital role in moving these bombs. They sought the help of the local agencies and also could have bribed persons on the border standing guarg to move these consignments. They were moving the bombs in separate consignements and sought to trigger off a series of attacks in another year. The idea was to move up to 300 bombs and hand grenades in a bid to attack the Bangladeshi establishment.

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Dawood missing since May

IMG_0460Dawood Ibrahim has been missing from his home in Karachi since May 28 2014. It was days after the Narendra Modi government took over that the ISI decided to shift its financial asset to the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. He has been in that region since the past five months and the ISI will not take a single chance to move him from there, an Intelligence Bureau official confirmed.

The apprehension that the ISI had was that India had already collected all possible information on Dawood and knew his exact whereabouts. India had contemplated carrying out a major operation to nab him dead or alive and in a bid to scuttle this plan, the ISI along with its own security personnel moved him to the Afghanistan-Pakistan border in the month of May. Moreover the ISI was also well aware that nabbing Dawood Ibrahim was a pet project of the National Security Advisor and wanted to take no chance.

Keeping Dawood in the Af-Pk border only meant that his base was entirely new and they could keep moving him around as and when India gathered intelligence on him. The IB official further informed that the Af-Pk border is a safe den for several ISI assets. They have kept even the AQIS chief Asim Umar over there. These areas are heavily guarded and controlled by the ISI and the Paksitan army and they consider it to be safer to keep their operatives there rather than in Karachi.

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Burdhwan loaded with political messages

IMG_0018The Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh or the JMB which is the militant wing of the Jamaat-e-Islami in Bangladesh had set its eyes on carrying out a series of high profile abductions in a bid to ensure the safe entry of several Bangladesh Nationalist Party members. According to the input shared with the Research and Analysis Wing on the political ramifications of this incident at Burdhwan it becomes clear that there was more than what met the eye and the JMB had full plans on helping the political rivals of the Awami League which had filed a series of corruption cases against members of the BNP.

The mighty political ramifications this incident has prompted the Prime Minister to even send his top team of security officials headed by the National Security Advisor to Burdhwan to take stock of the situation. The visit by the NSA not only sends a very tough message to the West Bengal establishment which has been accused of a cover up but also will show Bangladesh that India is very serious about dismantling the terror network that their terrorists have set up India.

During the visit, the NSA and his team took stock of the situation while also advising the investigators about the importance of this probe. There is an urgent need to shut down these terror factories and act on the intelligence reports shared between the two countries. At no cost should these modules flourish and by the end of the probe the JMB should be history is what the special team from Delhi told the investigators. He also emphasized the need to ensure that there is cooperation from the state police as well and how this plays an important role since intelligence reports suggest that the JMB will look to send more people into West Bengal. There is also a warning of aggression among the JMB and they may try and orchestrate a strike within the country in a bid to seek revenge against the busting of their modules.

Bangladesh has expressed a great deal of concern over the Burdhwan module of the JMB and India on the other hands wants good relations with Bangladesh. India has assured Bangladesh of a thorough probe and also shutting down these modules which number nearly 53 in West Bengal alone.

The modules of the JMB had proposed to carry out a series of strikes in Bangladesh. They had set up bomb factories and procured plenty of material right from ball bearings, pellets, lathes, ammonium nitrate among others. They had even set up a Fidayeen wing to execute attacks and even target the Prime Minister of Bangladesh. They had planned on undertaking a major hostage crisis in Bangladesh and then demand a safe passage for the members of the BNP who had gone on exile, the R& AW report also suggests.

Several members of the BNP have fled Bangladesh thus creating a political vaccum. The Awami League in particular has been extremely harsh on the Jamaat which has been trying to establish an Islamic state in Bangladesh. The Jamaat has been in regular touch with various radical outfits including the Al-Qaeda to execute this plan, but they have repeatedly failed as the Bangladesh establishment has been particularly harsh on them. The Al-Qaeda too has spoken up for the Jamaat recently and felt the need to put up a brave fight in order to ensure that an Islamic state is established. The Al-Qaeda even went up to the extent of accusing the Awami League of walking into India’s trap and converting Bangladesh into a Hindu state as well.

Burdhwan’s money trail busted

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The information shared by the Indian and Bangladeshi Intelligence agencies have found that the militant wing of the Jamaat-e-Islami known as the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh used the same route that even the Al-Qaeda used to finance it’s operations. Three NGO’s ‎- Rabata-al-alam-al-islami, al-nahiyan and the Revival of Islamic Heritage have been primarily responsible for moving money into West Bengal to fund the Burdhwan blast Intelligence agencies have found.
Money to the tune of RS 850 crore moved out of West Bengal between 2009 and 2012. Some part of this money was parked at the Islami Bank of Bangladesh while the rest was moved to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Mexico . Three NGOs, one at Kuwait and two in Saudi received money which was meant to be then transferred to the JMB through a hawala channel. The Hawala channel connecting Bangladesh and India directly was avoided and another channel was used. The money management was handed over to Kausar who today is on the run. The interrogation details reveal his name several times and the accused say he was the one who brought the money in.

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