Gujarat blasts accused IM co-founder Tauqeer held from Ghazipur

Updated: Jan 23, 2018, 08:39 IST | Samiullah Khan

Delhi cops' special cell, which had been keeping an eye on his movements, nabbed him in Ghazipur

IM co-founder Abdul Subhan Qureshi alias Tauqeer being produced in a court in New Delhi on Monday. Pic/PTI
IM co-founder Abdul Subhan Qureshi alias Tauqeer being produced in a court in New Delhi on Monday. Pic/PTI

Wanted in the 2008 Gujarat serial bomb blasts case and carrying a Rs 4 lakh reward on his head, alleged terrorist Abdul Subhan Qureshi alias Tauqeer was arrested by Delhi Police's special cell on Saturday from Ghazipur, where he had gone to meet an old associate.

Troubled past
Sources said Tauqeer had been accused of being a commander of the Students' Islamic Movement of India (SIMI). After it was banned, and arriving at the conclusion that the outfit could no longer do anything for Indian Muslims, Tauqeer along with Tariq, Salim, Dr Shahnawaz Alam alias Guddu bhai and the Bhatkal brothers founded the Indian Mujahideen (IM) in Kurla in 2000, in a bid to air the community's problems in the country. They used to go for jamats held in mosques to find young Muslims and radicalise them.

Tauqeer fled India and was living in Nepal and Saudi Arabia for a few years; he was last traced to Nepal in 2011. However, lack of coordination between the agencies helped him to escape before the cops reached his place in the neighbouring hilly country. He returned to India on finding out that most of the leadership had been killed in action or arrested by intelligence agencies. He wanted to revive IM in Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Karnataka and Uttar Pradesh.

'Our child won't do this'
His father, Mira Road resident Mohammed Mushtaque Qureshi, 70, said, "We know about his connection and interests in SIMI, but he can't be involved in the blast. Our child will never do that. But if it's found and proven that he is involved, he should be given maximum punishment." While police and officers from intelligence agencies used to visit his house periodically, the family said there's been no contact with him for the last 12 years. "There are several instances of such arrests and subsequent release after years of investigation; hopefully, that will happen in our case too," he added, replying in the negative when asked if he knew about Tauqeer's arrest.

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