Suspected JeM terrorists, posed as students, arrested

Lucknow: The two suspected terrorists of Jaish-e-Mohammad, the group behind an attack of CRPF soldiers in Pulwama district, were posing as students and involved in recruiting for the terror outfit in Deoband of Saharanpur district, a senior UP police official said Sunday.

Director General of Police O P Singh interrogated them for about four hours and later coordinated with his counterpart from Jammu and Kashmir, from where the two hailed, said the Anti-Terror Squad official. “An analysis of mobile phones of both the accused has started and important information pertaining to module and its members have been retrieved,” he said.

The official said more arrests are likely in future. The arrested persons were using BBM, virtual numbers and an app not available on Google Play Store. It was used for messaging. In their conversation, the movement of weapons and preparations to commit major terror incident were discussed,” he said.

Shahnawaz Ahmad Teli, from Kulgam in J&K, and Aquib Ahmad Malik, from Pulwama, were arrested from the seminary town on Thursday night and .32 bore pistols and cartridges were seized. Teli and Malik, aged between 20-25 years, were living in Deoband and posing as students without taking admission anywhere, DGP Singh told reporters here on Friday.

They were trying to recruit for JeM, which has claimed responsibility for the February 14 terrorist attack in Pulwama in which 40 CRPF soldiers were killed, he said. Giving details of the operation, Singh said a student alerted them about the two suspected JeM members, who were arrested following surveillance.

“Jehadi chats, videos and photos were also found. These are being investigated,” the DGP said. The two suspects will be brought to Lucknow on transit remand, he added. Asked whether the two men were involved in Pulwama attack, Singh said, “It’s difficult to say whether they came here before the attack or after that. A probe is on.”

“Both are being interrogated about when they arrived from Kashmir…how many other members are involved, have they succeeded in recruiting anyone in JeM, from where did they get funding and how much, what was their target after recruitment,” the DGP said. He said Jammu and Kashmir police supported the entire operation and the two forces will coordinate in the future too. On Saturday, the two alleged JeM terrorists, were sent to 10-day police custody by a local court.

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