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Tihar used for indoctrination for jihad: LeT operative

Posted on Jul 29 2014 | IANS

New Delhi, July 29 : Abdul Subhan, the 42-year-old Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operative arrested by Delhi Police July 20, has revealed details about indoctrination of hardcore criminals in Tihar jail for jihad.

Subhan, who was arrested from the Sarai Kale Khan inter-state bus terminus, informed officials of Delhi Police's special cell that Asif Raza Khan alias Zaheer, a resident of Kolkata who was killed in an encounter, and his brother Amir were indoctrinated in Tihar.

Subhan said Maulana Masood Azhar and Mustaq Ahmed Zargar - top leaders of terrorist outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed - had indoctrinated Asif and Amir inside Tihar.

Asif and Amir later joined the LeT.

Subhan's interrogation also revealed that Amir later became a founding member of the Indian Mujahideen, also a banned terrorist outfit.

He informed police that he has worked with Aftab Ahmed - a notorious criminal of Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh - who was then based in Dubai and is now in Kolkata jail, and also with Asif and Amir.

Subhan, who is from Mewat in Haryana, joined the LeT in 2001. The same year he was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) following his linkage with a large haul of RDX and ammunition recovered from a truck from Patan in Gujarat.

Subhan was convicted for 10 years and came out of Sabarmati jail in 2010 after completing a sentence of about eight years.

"After his release from jail, Subhan again went back to his old ways and started indoctrinating and recruiting people from Mewat," said an official on the condition of anonymity.

According to the official, Subhan used religious congregations to spot youths for indoctrination.

"He was given a task to create a new LeT module in Mewat. Subhan used to impart his ideas of jihad after spotting a person and later used to reveal his identity as a hardcore LeT terrorist," the official said.

Subhan visited Pakistan twice in 2012 and was tasked with recruiting young students from Mewat.

Officials said Subhan was in direct contact with LeT commanders like Javed Baluchi and intelligence head Ajam Cheema, reportedly based in Pakistan.

He was getting orders from these Pakistan-based operatives concerning the Mewat module.

According to the official, the special cell learnt about the Mewat module, which was planning to carry out terror strikes in India, in November and busted it with the arrest of Shahid and Rashid in December 2013.

The official said Subhan was coordinating with his nephew and LeT terrorist Asahbuddin, who is lodged in Kolkata jail, to create the Mewat module.

Asahbuddin was brought to Delhi by the special cell which got his remand till Aug 2.

He was serving a life term in the Kolkata jail for his role in the 2001 kidnapping of Khadim's owner Partha Roy Burman and his involvement in a haul of explosives recovered in Gujarat.

He and his gang members collected a hefty ransom in crores in exchange for Burman's release and the money was used to finance the terror network.

Police said Asahbuddin was facilitating the supply of money needed by Subhan through hawala.

Subhan, police said, met Asahbuddin in April 2013 and discussed about the recruitment process in Mewat.

"Asahbuddin also visited Mewat after coming out from the Kolkata jail in August 2013 on a 15-day parole," said the official.

The official did not divulge the number of people indoctrinated by Subhan in Mewat but said police were on the lookout for some of his associates.

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