Bangladesh's elite security forces overnight arrested a top militant of outlawed Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) and seized over 70 kilograms of explosives in the national capital, officials said on Monday.
Acting on a tip-off, elite Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) forces arrested JMB's explosive expert Mohammad Hanif alias Kalam and seized explosives and bomb making materials from two of their hideouts at Mirpur and Shanir Akhra area in the city.
"Kalam's confession and our intelligence reports suggests JMB's stock-pilled explosives and bomb making materials were to be used at a suitable time as they are now busy in regrouping the outfit through fresh recruitments," RAB's Addition Director General Col Guljaruddin Ahmad told PTI.
Ahmad said that JMB is now apparently trying to mobilise its strength with its second-tier leadership as the outfit suffered a massive set-back after the last year's execution of its six top leaders including its chief Shaikh Abdur Rahman and his deputy Siddiqul Islam 'Bangla Bhai'.
RAB officials said they also seized 40 kilograms of Nitric Acid, 150 locally-made grenade covers and huge bomb making gels, strong enough to produce 500 powerful bombs, and over 2000 books on "Islamic Jehad" during the raids.
"Kalam said he was entrusted with the charge of stock-pilling the materials by JMB's current chief Maulana Saidur Rahman," Ahmad said.
RAB officials said 28-year-old Kalam would be produced before a court later today and they would be seeking 10 day remand to further interrogate him.
The officials earlier said despite the execution of its top leaders and imprisonment of other top brass, over 250 trained operatives were still at large.