Alleged Indian Mujahideen (IM) operative Asadullah Akhtar alias Haddi has revealed that a member of global terror outfit al Qaeda is working with IM for operations in India.
In a statement before magistrate under section 164 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), which makes it admissible as evidence before a court during trial, Haddi has stated that one of his associates Waqas is from al Qaeda.
Haddi and another alleged IM operative Yasin Bhatkal, who were picked up from Nepal in August last year and arrested at the Indo-Nepal border in connection with the 2013 Dilsukhnagar blast in Hyderabad, had earlier revealed that the IM was in the process of a tie-up with al Qaeda.
Haddi said that he had an online chat with IM’s top leader Riyaz Bhatkal in Dec 2012 about an upcoming operation in Hyderabad. Then, Haddi was staying with Waqas in Mangalore. He further stated that Riyaz Bhatkal also wanted to use another associate Tehseen Akhtar alias Monu for the operation. The money for the operation was sent by Riyaz through hawala channel, Haddi stated.
According to the NIA investigators, Waqas, 24, is a Pakistani who came to India for the first time in September, 2010 along with Haddi. An expert in making electrical circuits for Improvised Explosive Devices, Waqas has participated in IM operations such as the Jama Masjid shootout (September, 2010), Varanasi bomb blast (December, 2010), Mumbai serial blasts (July, 2011), Pune blasts (August, 2012) and Hyderabad twin blasts (February, 2013).
The NIA has declared Rs 10 lakh reward on any information leading to Waqas’ arrest. Investigators say he needs constant medical attention due to partial paralysis of the face.