The Maharashtra anti-terrorism squad (ATS) suspected members of the Khandwa module of SIMI were involved in the 2014 blast outside a police station in Pune, in which four people were injured. Members of the module, originally involved in crimes such as robberies, over the years became involved in terrorism, according to a source in the ATS.
The ATS had at the time announced a reward of Rs 10 lakh for information about three of its members – Guddu Ismail Khan, alias Mehboob, 32; Amjad Ramjan Khan, 30; and Zakir Hussian Sadiq, alias Vinay Kumar, 32 – all residents of Khandwa in MP. In December 2014, a nationwide alert was sounded by central agencies regarding five SIMI men, and two of them were killed in Telagana in April 2015. Guddu and Zakir were killed in the encounter in Bhopal on Monday.
In 2014-15, security agencies in the state were worried that the SIMI module seemed to the filling the void left by the arrests of several key Indian Mujahideen (IM) members such as Yasin Bhatkal and others who were active in Maharashtra.
A source said the module was also suspect in the blast at Bijnor, Uttar Pradesh, in September 2014. The group is also suspected of having engineered a blast in a Bangalore-Guwahati train at Chennai Central station, which killed a young software engineer on May 1, 2014, and of a bank robbery in Karimnagar, Telangana, on February 1, 2014.