Mumbai: ISIS recruiter from Malwani not a minor

ATS presented proof in court to show that alleged ISIS recruiter Rizwan Nawazuddin is 19 years old and that his kin had forged the documents to claim otherwise

The Anti-Terrorism Squad yesterday proved in court that arrested suspected ISIS recruiter Rizwan Ahmed Ali Nawazuddin alias Khalid, from Malwani, is not a minor and, hence, can be sent to ATS’ custody. His father’s service sheet and family certificate showed that Rizwan was 19 years old.

Rizwan Ahmed Ali Nawazuddin
Rizwan Ahmed Ali Nawazuddin

Earlier, the magistrate court had refused to grant ATS Rizwan’s custody as his family had produced some documents — certificates of admission in Budha Intermediate College in Kushinagar, UP, and some certificates from school — in the court saying he was a minor, following which he was sent to the Dongri child correction home. After yesterday’s developments, the court remanded him to police custody till February 16.

Rizwan, who is believed to be the second-in-command recruiter for ISIS in India after Mudabbir Shaikh, was arrested on January 23 from Uttar Pradesh. Rizwan was in contact with the four Malwani youths who left their homes between October-December last year allegedly to join the terror outfit.

Fake documents
The ATS, which had earlier obtained Rizwan’s voter ID to ascertain his age, tried to verify the documents presented by his family and learnt that they were fake. Assistant Commissioner of Police Dinesh Ahir(investigating officer from ATS) said, “We may register a case of forgery against his family members as they produced forged documents pertaining to his age.”

New proofs
ATS informed the court yesterday that they have obtained information on Rizwan’s father’s (who is a government servant) service sheet.

In that sheet, maintained on June 12, 2002, his father had mentioned Rizwan’s age as six years, which meant he was born in the year 1996. Also, ATS told the court that they have obtained Rizwan’s family certificate, according to which he is 19 years and seven months old.

Rizwan, who is believed to have visited many places across the country to recruit youths by conducting meetings, also revealed that his foreign handler was in contact with almost all the 14 suspects — arrested recently by the National Investigating Agency (NIA) and other counter terror agencies — to radicalise them and train them in bomb-making.

ATS may take Mudabbir Shaikh and the arrested businessman from Mazgaon in its custody to question them in the case.

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