New Delhi: Two suspected operatives of al-Qaeda were arrested from the national capital and Odisha yesterday.
While Mohammed Asif (41), believed to be one of the founding members and the Indian head (amir) of al-Qaeda in the Indian sub-continent’s (AQIS) motivation, recruitment and training wing, was held from Seelampur in northeast Delhi, another operative Abdul Rahman (37) was arrested from Jagatpur area of Cuttack in Odisha, police said.
Rahman was arrested after a raid by a joint team of Delhi Police and Bhubaneswar-Cuttack Commissionerate Police at his house in Paschimakachha village in Jagatpur area in the wee hours, Commissioner of Police R P Sharma told reporters in Bhubaneswar. The duo was been booked under provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, said Special Commissioner (Special Cell) Arvind Deep in Delhi.
Police recovered three mobile phones, a laptop and other “incriminating articles”, including documents of indoctrination and jihadi literature (authored by Maulana Umar) from Asif’s possession.
Rahman is suspected to have international links in countries like Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and Dubai. Rahman, who is married and has three children, ran a madrasa at Tangi area near Cuttack.
His brother Tahir Ali was arrested in 2001 in connection with the terrorist attack on the American Centre in Kolkata, police said.
The Delhi police yesterday confirmed that it had bust a module of the al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS). "For the first time, the module of AQIS has been busted in our country. Its foundation was announced on September 2014. Two persons have been arrested; one is Mohammed Asif, resident of Sambal, Uttar Pradesh and the other one is Maulana Abdur Rehman who has been arrested in Odisha," Special Commissioner of Police (Special Cell) Arvind Deep told reporters.