My son is innocent, claims arrested al-Qaeda operative’s father | india | Hindustan Times
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My son is innocent, claims arrested al-Qaeda operative’s father

india Updated: Dec 18, 2015 15:15 IST

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Mohammad Asif, a suspected member of Al-Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) arrested by the Delhi Police Special Cell.(HT File Photo)

Father of a suspected al-Qaeda operative, who was arrested recently in Delhi, has claimed that his son is “innocent” and that the family would try to save him.

“My son used to sell clothes brought from Delhi. He is not much educated and never fights with anyone. How can we believe that he was associated with al-Qaeda. My son cannot be a terrorist,” Ataur Rehman, father of Mohammad Asif told reporters on Thursday.

Two suspected al Qaeda operatives were arrested earlier this week by the Delhi Police, who claimed to have busted a module of the terror group in the Indian subcontinent that was operating out of the country.

While Mohammed Asif (41) was held from Seelampur in northeast Delhi, another operative, Abdul Rahman (37) was nabbed in Jagatpur area of Cuttack in Odisha, police said.

Read | Delhi Police arrest third suspected al Qaeda operative in UP

According to police, it was found during interrogation that Asif belonged to Deepa Sarai mohalla in Sambhal district, from where one Zafar Masood was arrested on December 17 in this connection.

“My son is innocent and we will trying to save him,” Rehman said.

Asif’s youger brother too defended him and said that he (Asif) had once gone to Saudi Arabia and then he had sold his portion of house to manage money.

“An alert has been sounded in the district after the arrests in Delhi and Odisha,” Superintendent of Police (SP) Atul Saxena had said yesterday.

“Directives have been issued for verification of workers in factories and a search operation has been started,” he had said.

Asif is believed to be one of the founding members and the Indian head (amir) of al-Qaeda in Indian subcontinent’s (AQIS) motivation, recruitment and training wing.

AQIS was floated by al-Zawahari in September, 2014, following a meeting in the Af-Pak region which reportedly had in its quorum the entire grand council (Arabian Shura) of al-Qaeda, including al-Zawahiri’s son-in-law, a senior official said.

Read | Cops say head of al Qaeda in India caught, module busted