A person suspected to be Amir Raza Khan, one of the founders of terror outfit Indian Mujahideen (IM), has been detained in a European country since almost a week. In a swift reaction, a team of Indian investigators is being dispatched with all the evidence to prove his identity, sources told HT.
The government is treading cautiously as there have been many instances in the past when a person was picked up abroad on the suspicion of being wanted in India but later his identity didn’t match that of the suspect.
According to investigators, Khan, 36, had been holed up in Pakistan after fleeing from India in the early 2000s. Khan, along with his brother Asif, had allegedly kidnapped Kolkata-based shoe baron Partho Burman in 2001 and the alleged ransom was used for terror activities.Continued Investigators suspect that a part of the ransom they got from Burman went to the kitty of Mohammad Atta, the leader of the 9/11 suicide squad that attacked World Trade Tower and Pentagon in the US.
Asif was shot dead by the Gujarat police in an encounter in December, 2001. To avenge his brother’s death, Khan had allegedly planned the American Centre shootout in January 2002 along with Aftab Ansari.
“The Kolkata police was asked to gather all the evidence for proving his identity. The main Interpol notice against Amir Raza Khan was issued in 2002 for his alleged involvement in the American Centre shootout case. Later, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) also approached the Interpol to add more cases wherein he is wanted. The NIA is looking for him for making extortion calls to businessmen in order to raise funds for his jehadi activities,” said a government official requesting anonymity.
Alleged top Indian Mujahideen operative Yasin Bhatkal, arrested in August 2013, told investigators that a rift had emerged in his Pakistan-based associates and they had formed two groups. In this rift, Amir Raza Khan had been sidelined.