NIA files charge sheet against 11 terrorists held from Bengal, Kerala

New Delhi, Feb 26 (PTI): The NIA on Friday filed a charge sheet against 11 members of the banned terrorist group al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent for allegedly planning to carry out attacks in India on the instructions of their Pakistan- and Bangladesh-based handlers, an official said.
Murshid Hasan, Mosaraf Hoseen, Mainul Mandal, Lea Yean Ahmed, Najmus Sakib, Iyakub Biswas, Samim Ansari, Abu Sufian, Atiur Rahman, Al Mamun Kamal and Abdul Momin Mandal have been named in the charge sheet under sections of the IPC, the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the Arms Act, the NIA official said. The case was registered by the NIA based on information about an al-Qaeda-inspired module sprouting and operating in West Bengal and Kerala under the leadership of Hasan, the spokesperson of the premier investigation agency said.
The members of this module were in advanced stage of conspiracy to execute terrorist attacks in different parts of the country, the NIA official said.
In raids conducted on September 19 last year in West Bengal and Kerala, nine terrorists were arrested. Subsequently, two more terror operatives were arrested from West Bengal on August 26 and November 1 last year. Hasan was in touch with al-Qaeda handlers based in Pakistan and Bangladesh and had received instructions along with radical propaganda material through encrypted social media platforms from them, the NIA official said.
Hasan along with his other associates conspired to radicalise and recruit more individuals into al-Qaeda, he said.
They disseminated radical material through social media and encrypted chat platforms with an intention to radicalise and recruit others for establishing an Islamic State by waging a violent jihad in India, the NIA spokesperson said.
They planned to attack individuals whom they consider ‘Kafirs’ and conducted a series of conspiratorial meetings for raising funds for the purchase of arms and ammunition and explosive materials, radicalising and recruiting more members and charting out the future course of action, including establishing a Markaz (a training centre for providing religious and weapons training to new recruits), he said.
The accused were also in active communication with an arms dealer through their foreign-based handlers and were planning to receive a consignment of sophisticated arms and ammunition in New Delhi, the NIA official said.
However, their plans could not succeed as they landed in the police net.
The accused persons were planning to attack among others, an India-based Bangladeshi blogger for his views expressed on social media, the NIA official said, adding that further investigation against the absconding accused continues.

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