Is India under threat from Bangladeshi terrorist outfits?

The National Intelligence Agency this morning nabbed a Jamaat-Ul-Mujhaideen – a Bangladeshi terror organisation leader – Mohammed Jahidul Islam alias Kausar – in Bangalore. Some electronic devices and traces of explosives were seized from his house. He is key accused in Burdwan’s Khagragarh blast case.

Kausar was residing in India under forged documents and posing as an Indian.

Representative image of cities under terror threat watch by Intelligence agencies

In May, this year five terrorists of a Bangladesh-based terror group, Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT), were arrested by the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorist Squad. The ABT – is a front organisation of Al Qaeda. The investigations revealed that the ABT terrorists may have entered in Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata cities of the country to carry out terror-related activities.

In March 2017, Maharashtra ATS arrested three Bangladeshi nationals in connection with sheltering terrorists and having links with ABT. The arrested suspects were Mohammad Ripan Hossein, Hannan Anwar Khan alias Hanan Babarali Ghazi and Mohammadwadi Habibur Rahman alias Raj Jesub Mandal.

Intelligence sources informed GoaChronicle.com that ABT and JuM members are known to have small bases in some parts Mumbai, Pune, Lucknow, Bangalore, Aligarh, Kolkatta, Hyderabad and Goa.
Since 2017, there have been 12 arrests so far related to links with ABT and 14 from JuM – both closely linked terror groups.

The stand of the government of India to crackdown on illegal Bangladeshi immigrants, intelligence sources reveal has led to ABT and JuM pursuing its objectives more aggressively in India and also finding sympathisers from among the illegal Bangladeshi migrants for their cause. Illegal immigrants provide the logistical support to ABT and JuM.

Sources in the Middle East intelligence circuit told GoaChronicle.com that there has been some of movement of parts of equipment and small quantities of Uranium into India through the borders of Nepal and Bangladesh. It is not known the purpose of the movement of the part of equipment and the Uranium but the inference being drawn is that there is to be a planned attack on India in particular Delhi around December 16th which is the Victory Day celebrated in Bangladesh but other cities like Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad or a city in UP like Lucknow could also be a target.

Indian Intelligence is keeping a close watch on the activities not only in India but also in Bangladesh which is also expected to face terror activities in run-up to the country’s general election.

Information from Bangladeshi intelligence sources reveal that Jamaat-ul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) and Ansarul Islam along with other smaller groups are trying to come together and forge an umbrella organisation to escalate their activities ahead of general elections due later this year. The terrorists may target ‘popular and progressive’ Awami League leaders and also security officials, government establishments and independent bloggers and foreigners working in development projects.

Sources in Indian government say the expansion plans of militant groups in Bangladesh are largely rooted in domestic political dynamics especially due to “marginalisation” of the Khaleda Zia-led Bangladesh Nationalist Party(BNP) through corruption cases and their conviction.

“Radical Islamist groups are trying to forge a single platform with the aim to create anarchy ahead of the national elections, intelligence agencies alerted the Home Ministry (of Bangladesh) recently,” said a report in Dhaka-based English newspaper ‘The Daily Star’.

“There is threat, but we are aware of it and working on it in full swing. So, their activities have been minimised,” Additional Deputy Inspector General (Intelligence & Special Affairs) Md Moniruzzaman has been quoted as saying in the newspaper.

It has also been suggested that a top leader of a faction of Gonojagoron Mancha, a civil society group, might also be a target of the militants as the mainstream JMB had been monitoring their activities.

Sources further said the influx of hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims from Myanmar’s Rakhine state in August-December 2017 also has raised security concerns for Bangladesh. Reports also said Jehadist groups and also ISIS could try exploiting ‘Rohingya’s plight’ in efforts to mobilise support.

Accordingly, Bangladesh government has been advised by Indian agencies that efforts should be made not only on counter-terrorism operations or enhanced security measures but on providing support for refugees and intensify the efforts to assuage potential friction between Rohingyas and host communities.

Indian intelligence agencies are working diligently on the information procured and are keeping a close eye on suspected members of ABT and JuM movement and their known sympathizers in India.

Savio Rodrigues

Savio Rodrigues Founder & Editor-in-Chief GoaChronicle.com

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