The Fasih Mehmood mystery
Fasih Mohammad is a name in circulation and in investigation circles he is considered to be a primary player for the Indian Mujahideen based out of Jubail in Saudi Arabia. The police say that he would be probed for his alleged role in the Chinnaswamy stadium blasts at Bangalore. However the more important aspect today is the whereabouts of this man who is an engineer by profession.
A fortnight ago it was reported that Mehmood was brought down to India in an undercover operation carried out by the Indian agencies. His family members too confirmed this fact that Mehmood was taken away by the Indian agencies. He is said to have been brought down to Delhi first and then questioned later by the Bangalore police for his role in the stadium blasts.
However since this incident none of the Indian agencies have confirmed this fact and say that the man in question is still at Jubail. There is information regarding his involvement in the blasts, but we are still working out the formalities for his deportation officially. The Intelligence Bureau says that a red corner alert will be issued in a couple of days and after this process is completed he would be deported to India with the help of the Saudi authorities.
Mehmood is an engineer working at Jubail. He is said to have been arrested first by the police of Saudi Arabia and then taken away by the Indian agencies. His name is said to have cropped up during the interrogation of Kafeel Akthar who is in the custody of the Bangalore police for his alleged role in the stadium blasts. The Bangalore police is however tight lipped regarding the exact conversation they had with Akthar, but sources say that the name of Mehmood came into the picture when they found his name and number stored in Akthar’s cell phone.
The preliminary investigations regarding Mehmood go on to show that he was part of this network and could have contributed in a small way towards the stadium blasts. The police are also probing his role for any financial transactions that could have possibly been made from the Gulf. Further the other point of suspicion arose when they realised that he had done his education in Bhatkal, a town in Karnataka which had once a upon a time housed the Bhatkals- Yasin, Riyaz and Iqbal.
The journey for his family has been a hard one. The day he was said to have been taken away by the Indian police, they also said that on the same day his wife too had been deported to India. His family members say that the government has a responsibility to inform them about his whereabouts. Some even suspect that from Saudi he was taken to Delhi and later to Bangalore.
The Jamia Teachers’ Solidarity Association which has been helping the family members in their fight to find Mehmood say that it has been over two weeks that Fasih Mahmood practically disappeared from his residence in Jubail, Saudi Arabia, where he worked as an engineer. On 13th May, Sunday, Mahmood was taken away by a group of Indian and Arab men, all in civil dress, and their house searched, while his wife, Nikhat Perveen, was held in a room by an Arab woman.
While his wife and family have received no official communication from the Indian government, speculation has been rife in the press that Mahmood has been arrested—a wholly wrong usage, as it can only be termed illegal detention—for being financier to the alleged terror plots of the shadowy organistaion, Indian Mujahideen. While pleas of Nikhat seeking the details of her husband’s whereabouts are falling on deaf ears, unnamed ‘sources’ are zealously leaking allegations against Mahmood to the press. So far, MHA, MEA and NHRC have all obstinately stonewalled Nikhat entreaties, feigning ignorance. The Home Secretary has refused to give any assurance to Nikhat that her husband would be produced; indeed, he claimed to have no information on him.
Fasih Mahmood’s illegal detention in an undisclosed location, possibly on foreign land, is in gross violation of all established legal procedures.
We demand that Fasih Mahmood must be immediately produced in an Indian court, and that the Indian government officially own up to this illegal ‘arrest’. Fasih Mahmood must be given immediate access to his family and lawyers.
The Indian establishment however are in denial regarding the arrest/detention of this man. We are following a proper procedure to ensure that he is brought down to India in order for us to probe his role in the stadium blasts. We have sufficient proof to seek the extradition of Mehmood and once he is brought down it would be made public, sources also point out.
Investigators say that he had visited India at the time of the attack. We need to question him to find out about his role and even ascertain whether he was involved or not. However the allegations by the family members that he is in our custody is wrong and time would tell the correct picture, the police also add.