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Police probe Kafeel, Sabeel's possible terror links

Karnataka police are trying to probe Kafeel, Sabeel's involvement in Britain for a car bomb attack on Glasgow airport.
IANS | By HT Correspondent, Bangalore
UPDATED ON JUL 07, 2007 02:25 PM IST

Police in Karnataka are pursing fresh inputs as they piece together the various links of two Indian brothers arrested in Britain for a car bomb attack on Glasgow airport.

Police sources made the admission in Bangalore even as Maqbool Ahmed, their father, admitted that the TV footage of the young man who drove the blazing vehicle to the airport June 30 and got badly burnt seemed to be that of his son Kafeel.

Kafeel is believed to be the person warded in a British hospital with 90 per cent burns. His brother Sabeel Ahmed, a doctor, is also in British custody.

But their mother Zakhia insisted that she was still not too sure from the television images of the burnt man if it was Kafeel while admitting that she had no idea where he was now, police sources told IANS.

She too, however, agreed that other photos of the young man flashed by the media were Kafeel's.

The doctor parents of Kafeel and Sabeel and other family members were interrogated for over five hours Thursday and Friday.

The father, Maqbool Ahmed, was not subjected to much questioning in view of his ill health, police sources said, adding that it was Zakhia who answered most of their questions.

Zakhia and her daughter Saida Kauser were taken from their residence in the middle class area of Banashankeri for questioning in view of the swarming media persons outside their house.

Maqbool Ahmed was left behind. The family was brought back to the house after over three hours.

The main task of the police is to unearth the various links of the Kafeel and Sabeel Ahmed, including if they were involved with any militant outfit in the country.

A police team gone to Davangere, about 200 km from Bangalore, to talk to teachers at the engineering college, where Kafeel studied mechanical engineering and passed out in 2000.

The team will also meet his former classmates and acquaintances there.

Police are also investigating reports that two friends of Kafeel, a Pakistani and a Palestinian, have fled from Bangalore since the Glasgow attack. "We are checking the reports," a police official told IANS.

Mohammed Haneef, detained in Brisbane, is also a doctor and a cousin of Kafeel and Sabeel.

The police want to know if any of them were actively involved in the Tabligi Jamaat missionary sect, whether any of them was a member of the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) and whether they were merely deeply religious.

According to reports, the brothers had differences with local mosque authorities on the way prayers and preaching were conducted there after they joined the Tabligi Jamaat.

Samiullah, secretary at the Jamia Hazrat Tipu Masjid at Banashankari, had told reporters that the brothers used to visit the mosque as children but they changed joining the Tabligi Jammat.

The police are also verifying reports that Kafeel had organised a meeting on Chechenya in May when he was here.

According to Bangalore Police Commissioner N Achut Rao, neither British nor Australian police have sought their help.

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