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ISIS like terror module:Terror funds generated in the name of charity

Amroha-based terror module: Online handlers told members that using charity money for other purposes was justified if it was done in the name of ‘Jihad’

lucknow Updated: Dec 30, 2018 15:13 IST
Rohit K Singh
Rohit K Singh
Hindustan Times, Lucknow
ISIS like terror module,ISIS,terror funds
Several weapons and a cache of ammunition which were recovered by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) during its raids at 17 locations across Meerut, Lucknow, Hapur, Amroha and Seelampur in connection with its probe into a new Islamic State-inspired module, ‘Harkat ul Harb e Islam(PTI)

Members of the Amroha-based ISIS-inspired terror module used the pretext of charity and religious activities to collect funds for their nefarious activities, suggested initial probe by National Investigation Agency (NIA). The Lucknow-based woman, who was interrogated over terror funding, too revealed that she gave ₹ 2.5 lakh to terror module mastermind Mufti Mohammed Suhail in the name of the charity by selling her jewellery .

A police official assisting the NIA in the probe confirmed that the module mastermind Mufti Mohammed Suhail and nine others arrested from Amroha, Hapur and Delhi collected funds from different people in the name of charity and helping poor people. He said Suhail and other members confirmed during interrogation that they visited different places and approached rich families to collect funds.

He said more than five other people of Delhi and Uttar Pradesh were suspected of funding Mufti in the name of charity and other religious activities. The investigation agencies are verifying whether these people funded the terror module knowingly or unknowingly, he added.

The official said the 45-year-old Lucknow woman who was quizzed with her 17-year-old son for hours twice on Wednesday and Thursday, had revealed during interrogation that she sold the jewellery in a shop near Akbari Gate in Lucknow to fund Mufti. He said Mufti had met the woman during his visit to the madarsa in Billauchpura locality of Lucknow where her son has been studying for the past few years. He said the mother and the son belonged to a rich family and had business of plastic and iron products in Yahiaganj locality.

He said the woman denied having any knowledge of Mufti’s involvement into terror activities and gave him money only for charity. “Although the woman is suspected of having knowledge of Mufti’s intention she was not arrested as there are no substantial evidences to establish it later in court,” he stated.

“Other than the woman, one of the 10 arrested members, Anas had funded the module by stealing and selling jewellery of his family members,” he said .

The official said the arrested members revealed that their online handlers had told them that using charity money for other purposes and money earned with wrong means was not acceptable in their religion but it was justified if it was done in the name of ‘Jihad’ .

Mufti was arrested from a madarsa in Amroha after which three others were arrested from the same district, one from Hapur and five others from Delhi during subsequent raids at 17 places in UP and Delhi by the NIA and UP’s Anti Terror Squad. He said the NIA had also seized over ₹ 7.5 lakh and a huge haul of objectionable items and explosives from their possession.

The probe had revealed that a Pakistani named Huzaifa was the key handler of Mufti and other members of the Amroha-based terror module. A senior official said Huzaifa had only radicalised Mufti online by seeing his extremist posts on social media. He said the handler later shared terror literature and techniques to prepare pipe bombs and rocket launchers. Huzaifa gave them tricks to generate funds and other materials for their nefarious activities, he added.

First Published: Dec 30, 2018 14:59 IST