On Thursday, the CBI sent a stern message to Madan Mitra, saying “You have rested enough now come to our office for interrogation”. Madan Mitra, the transport minister of West Bengal, is one of the biggest catches for the CBI probing the Saradha scam.
Shielding the accused, directing omission of names and putting a spoke in the investigations by the Serious Frauds Investigation Office are the allegations listed against him for which the CBI has evidence.
Madan Mitra had played hard to get when he was summoned by the CBI twice. First he admitted himself to hospital and then told them he needed rest once he was discharged.
A key member of the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) module accused of moving funds to the Burdhwan blasts, Sahanur Alom was arrested at the Nalbari district of Assam by the National Investigating Agency (NIA) on Friday night. Alom’s name had cropped up several times during the NIA’s investigation of the Burdhwan case and they had even netted his wife, Sujna last month for her alleged involvement in the case.
There has been a hue and cry today following the statement in Parliament on the Saradha-Burdhwan link. Many termed the statement by the Minister of State for Personnel Jitendra Singh, as a clean chit to the Trinamool Congress (TMC), which has been accused of shielding the accused of both the Burdhwan and Saradha incidents. Before we look into this, let us see what exactly the minister told the Lok Sabha in a written response, “The investigation has so far not revealed any such transaction where money was routed to Bangladesh to fund terrorist activities. Read more
The National Investigating Agency has found more evidence to suggest that the Jharkhand module of the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen, Bangladesh was in fact an extremely dangerous one. The questioning of two operatives that it picked up yesterday has revealed that they had trained over 200 persons and each one of them was ready to carry out a strike as and when called upon.
The module which was set up in Sahibganj in Jharkhand was a strategic location for the JMB since it was around 250 kilometres from their primary module n Burdhwan. This module in Jharkhand was not just restricted to the JMB, but even members of the SIMI were part of it which only made it deadlier in nature. The busting of this module comes in the wake of a recent Intelligence Bureau alert which had warned that groups such as the SIMI along with naxals will try and disrupt elections to be held in the state.
During the questioning of two persons Shaikh Salahuddin and Jahangri Khan who were picked up by the NIA, it has been revealed that they played an active role in the activities of both the JMB and the SIMI. Salahuddin is a fake doctor while Khan a religious scholar and the duo confessed to have operated out of a Madrasa in Sahibganj which was in turn connected to the module in Burdhwan. Further the mastermind of the JMB, Sajid who is in the custody of the NIA at the moment too spoke about this Jharkhand module which according to him had trained over 100 youth. He also confessed that he himself had got trained in this module before which he headed out to Burdhwan and set up the rest of the modules.
NIA officers say that the module in Jharkhand was used by the SIMI as well. This is an indicator that the SIMI and the JMB were working on the project together. The last time the name of the Jharkhand module had come to light was when the NIA was investigating the Patna blasts. The SIMI operatives had confessed to having used the Jharkhand module for their operation and also said that several of its operatives were launched out of this module.
The busting of the Jharkhand module by the National Investigating Agency has brought them a step closer in cracking the code involving the SIMI and the JMB. The arrest of two persons Shaikh Saluddin and Jahangir Khan will throw more light on how this module at Sangrampur trained operatives of both the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen, Bangladesh and also the SIMI. This in fact was the same module that trained the operatives of the SIMI who carried out the Patna blasts which was meant to target Narendra Modi.
Now it has been found that Sajid along with several others of the JMB had obtained training at the same module in Sangrampur. What the NIA has learnt is that while modules in West Bengal were used as landing points and also centres for radicalization, they extensively used the one in Jharkhand to imart arms training.
Salauddin and Khan who have been part of this module since the past three years worked not only for the JMB but also helped out the SIMI. The documents that have been retrieved from these members are ample proof to show that arms training was imparted. Moreover this module made sense for the JMB since it bordered with West Bengal and crossing over was easier for them.
Officers in the Intelligence Bureau informed that these persons of both the JMB and SIMI have a similar ideology and hence decided to come together in establishing a common module. They relied on various other modules such as the ones in Assam from where members such as Rafik Islam and Ali Khan were sent to get trained. This module imparted training in combat such as shooting and hurling grenades into crowded areas. During the questioning of several JMB members it was revealed that they had a team which specialized in grenade warfare and they had proposed to use the same in Bangladesh.
The NIA is also probing the source of funding that this module received. They say that several NGO’s could have played a part in the funding which received the funds from Bangladesh. The money was parked in these NGO’s in Assam and then moved to these modules. The financial trail is an important one to crack, NIA sources also informed.
Sajid the man who headed the Burdhwan module and was arrested by the police sometime back had also roped in his wife Fatima for this operation. After his detention he was questioned during which he confessed to heading the Burdhwan module and also added that he,his wife and 12 other couples ran the module. Sajid a Bangladeshi national urged his cadres to marry Indian women so that they procure documents easily and over a period of time apply for Indian citizenship as well.
Sajid who is a commander of the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh was tasked with the responsibility of setting up the Burdhwan module. He ensured that a major part of the module should be run only by couples. He along with his wife Fatima and 12 other couples formed the top rung of the Burdhwan module. In addition to this he also was the man who stayed directly in touch with the central committee of the Jamaat in Bangladesh. He made several trips to Bangladesh over the past four years since work on the module began.
The NIA which will take custody of Sajid alias Shambu informed that he will help ascertain various facts. It is he who after all headed the module and we would like to also get leads on his wife Fatima who also played a very major role.
The Burdwan incident goes beyond the purview of a terror strike and when the National Security Advisor Ajit Doval visited West Bengal last week, he made it amply clear to the establishment that this incident is nothing but a coup against another nation.
With a team of the National Investigating Agency set to visit Bangladesh next week, it has its task cut out and would seek out details against at least 600 operatives all part of the network which was trying to set up its base in India in a bid to overthrow the Awami League.
Here we bring you the investigation details into the probe and going through the report of the NIA, one gets the picture as to how far and wide the entire operation spreads.
Setting up- The entire planning commenced in the year 2009 when a bunch of Jamaat-e-Islami leaders decided that they needed to overthrow the Awami League as this party had been merciless on their cadres. The Jamaat used several of its militant wings in order to execute this plan. It roped in its primary outfit the Jamaat-ul-Mujhaideen Bangladesh. The JMB was told that it would have to coordinate with the operatives of the Ansarulla Bangla, Jamaatul Muslimeen, Hepajat Islam and the Tanzim Tamiruddin in order to execute this plan.
In the later half of 2009 the JMB moved 10 of its operatives into West Bengal. Another 15 of them were moved into Assam. The first thing that they did was get in touch with the local leaders in both these states. West Bengal and Assam both had political outfits which were sympathetic to the cause of the Jamaat. The West Bengal module commenced its operations first in Madhyam Gram. This was the landing point for the operatives where they were handed out their voter ID cards and also passports. All these operatives were kept at the camps in Chittagong and Bandarban and launched into West Bengal in batches. Once in West Bengal, these cadres were taken to various camps which were set up in Malda, Nadia and Murshidabad. They started off with 10 modules in 2010 and by the turn of 2014 had managed to set up 53 modules. Continue reading “Burdwan- Not terror, its a coup”
The Intelligence Bureau says that it had issued a series of alerts since the year 2009 regarding the build up of the Burdhwan module. However what is interesting to point out that the first signs of a build up was spotted in the year 2007 and it was Colonel Purohit who had issued that alert and even prepared a report. While today the Burdhwan operation is being termed as setting up of a Greater Bangladesh, back then it was called a plan to establish Islamistan.
Colonel Purohit who has been accused of aiding subversive activities had in fact claimed several times that he had become a target and his job was to mingle with terrorists in order to prepare reports.
His letter which dates back to January 2007 makes a clear mention about the Burdwan module and the uneasy situation that was being created by Bangladesh based militants and the SIMI in India. His letter bearing the number 106/LU/G had stated that there was movement from Bangladesh where in some radicals were crossing over into West Bengal and settling down. He also mentions that these persons were involved in the movement of arms and ammunition into India. Colonel Purohit’s letter is a clear indicator that the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh with the able support of the Jamaat-e-Islami had decided on making West Bengal a base in order to target the establishment in Bangladesh. It is also an indicator that the same modules were trying to set up base for the SIMI in India as well.
Colonel Purohit who was part of the military intelligence wing at that time further states that several religious leaders from Bangladesh had set up shop in West Bengal. He states in his letter that they were acting as recruiters and had been involved in luring the youth into their fold. He also said that recruitments were also taking place in other cities including Bangalore and Pune as well.
Sahanur Alam, a shady character from Assam is proving to be the biggest fish in Burdhwan episode linking Assam. A dentist by profession he and his wife ran a dental clinic in Chatala, Barapeta which acted as a front to carry out activities for the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh.
This was an operation that was being run by Alam and his wife Sujuna. While Alam used his dental clinic in Chatala as a front, his wife had become the transporter of the funds, NIA sources informed. The NIA is also looking into a confidential report by the Assam police which has claimed that operatives of the JMB had close links with lower rung politicians in the state who were helping set up the JMB modules which was aiming at merging Bangladesh, West Bengal and Assam in a bid to make it a Greater Bangladesh.
A dentist by profession, Alam belonged to a upper wing of the JMB which had roped in several educated youth into their fold. Recruiting educated persons into the operation only meant that they avoid heat and also are in a better position to understand the real intent of the entire operation which the Indian agencies say was not a run of the mill terror strike but a full fledged military coup.
The Enforcement Directorate which is probing the money trail into the Burdhwan blasts case has prima facie detected that an amount to the tune of Rs 17.5 crore has been moved allegedly to finance the major coup that the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh was planning.
The Enforcement Directorate which is also probing the Saradha scam says that they are in particular looking into a transaction of Rs 68.5 crore through a hawala channel and unlike the other transactions this amount has changed hands several times and not landed in a bank.
The National Investigating Agency and the Enforcement Directorate is relying very heavily on the interrogation details of an operative by the name Mehmood Sheesh who is alleged to have worked closely with another operative by the name Kausar in managing the financial transactions. Mehmood who originally hails from Bangladesh was part of the JMB module which was planning the coup against the Sheikh Hasina led Awami League.
Mehmood however claimed ignorance when asked as to who exactly was behind primarily sourcing the money. The NIA and ED are however digging deep to find out if the money was raised through a scam or donations by various businessmen from Kolkata alone. However both the agencies say that while the bank heist of Karimnagar is under probe, a large chunk of this money came from Kolkata alone. Continue reading “Burdhwan- 17.5 crore operation”