Yuva Sai Sagar

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Author: Azaan Javaid

Investigation reveals ISIS conversations on Indian issues, Orlando shooting

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has been able to extract conversations that suspected ISIS operative Mohammad Masiuddin alias Musa, who was recently interrogated by the FBI , allegedly had with Syria-based members of the dreaded outfit using cloud-based instant messaging services.The conversations accessed revealed Masiuddin’s, take on issues ranging from Sharia, taxation policies, Kashmir issue,the Orlando night club shooting incident in Florida, USA, and socio-political parties of India including ruling BJP, RSS and VHP, apart from the obvious hatred ISIS has for Non-Muslims, and Muslims not practicing ISIS ideology.The messages give an insight into how suspected ISIS operatives in India are pursuing their alleged terror plans, which sometimes include sophisticated maneuvering to avoid detection, and at times includes simple tactics such as ordering a pepper spray online.According to the NIA chargesheet, the alleged chats took place between Masiuddin, Shafi Armar, Abu Suleiman and other suspected ISIS members on cloud-based instant messaging service Telegram in 2015 and 2016. Musa, a resident of Birbhum,West Bengal, was arrested earlier this year. Armar, formerly with proscribed outfit Indian Mujahideen, escaped India and is believed to be based in Sryia, while Abu Suleiman is a Bangladeshi ISIS/ JMB operative according to NIA.In one of the chats, Musa asks Armar to share tactics of “stab and escape”. The probe agency had recovered a knife and a sword from Musa and through the chats the 27-year-old had with Armar, it appears that it was on the behest of Musa’s ISIS handlers that he had plans to kill non-Muslims using these weapons.In another part of the conversation, Musa boasts about how all JMB members have become a part of ISIS and the dreaded outfit has a total membership of 10,000 in India. Musa, according to NIA documents, also does not seem to be pleased with the lone-wolf strategy of ISIS and believes that the group should organise and restrict itself to carrying out low intensity terror attacks to avoid detection.As reported earlier, Musa was asked by his handlers to target tourists in India, especially British, Russian, and American nationals. To execute the same, Musa had traveled to Kashmir as well as Kolkata to prepare for the attack. In Kashmir, Musa stayed as a tourist in hotels and houseboats and even allegedly admitted that he was the one who raised ISIS flags following Friday prayers in Srinagar’s Jama Masjid. Musa however seemed disappointed by the situation in the valley criticizing the armed insurgency in Kashmir and calling Kashmiri mujahideen “impure”.”A-1 (Musa) discusses with ISIS operatives on the other side of the chat that Kashmir is presently full of Mujhids with impure ideologies (post- Nabi) who are fighting for Kashmiri land whereas the actual requirement is for them to support Shariat,” the chargesheet reads. After praising Omar Mateen, the Orlando nightclub shooter, Musa allegedly lectures other group members against elections, democracy and taxes stating that Indian tax money is used for anti-ISIS activities. NIA quoted Musa saying that the Hindu population in India is “close” to BJP, RSS and VHP and must be targeted.Rest of the chat reflects the ill-planning of the arrested ISIS operative especially the part where in he discuses how to procure pepper spray through Snapdeal by using a fake ID. Musa ordered under the name Murugan Kumar and is quoted saying to his handlers that Cobra Magnum pepper spray is a dangerous liquid weapon and is capable of killing anyone without proof as it blinds people for 2-3 hours.

Owing cash crunch I-T officer asks for bribes in installments

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>An Income Tax (I-T) officer in Visakhapatnam was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on allegations that he demand a bribe of rupees 1,50,000 in exchange of dropping departmental proceedings against a person who was recently issued with a notice by the I-T department. The probe agency has further recovered cash from the I-T officer to the tune of more than 2 lakh rupees.Interestingly, the person, also the complainant in the case, revealed to CBI that the arrested I-T officer was considerate enough to let him pay the bribes in installments.The complainant told the CBI that after he expressed the difficulties he had been facing to collect the said amount, owning to newly introduced demonetization measures , the I-T officer suggested the said bribe could be paid in installments of 30,000 each.”Agreement to pay bribes in installment was reached only after the officer was told about the difficulties that the complainant was facing to collect the said money,” said a senior CBI official. The I-T officer was identified as B Srinivasa Rao posted in MVP Colony, Visakhapatnam.While elaborating details of the case a CBI official said, ” It is standard practice for people interesting in investing in land to buy a plot and hire a builder to construct flats. The builder in return can either ask for direct payments or simply owner ship of some of the flats he/she constructed. In this particular case, the complainant had given his plot for development to a builder in Visakhapatnam was yet to receive his share of 12 flats. The accused IT officer demanded a bribe of Rs. 1,50,000 for dropping further proceedings with reference to the notice issued to the complainant in respect of sale of immoveable property, which require payment of Capital Gains”.According to CBI when, the complainant was unable to arrange the bribe, the officer allegedly agreed to accept money in installments and directed him to pay the first installment of Rs 30,000 on December 27.”CBI laid a trap and caught the IT officer red handed while demanding and accepting the bribe of Rs 30,000 from the complainant. During the searches conducted at the office and residential premises of accused at Visakhapatnam, several incriminating documents including cash of Rs 2,03,370 was recovered.

WB terror suspect raised ISIS flags in Kashmir, says NIA

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Monday revealed that suspected Islamic State operative Mohammad Masiuddin also known as Musa, who was earlier this month interrogated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for his alleged terror activities, had waved flags of the terror outfit during his stay in Kashmir earlier this year.The revelation came after filing charge sheet against Masiuddin stating that the 27-year-old was planning terror attacks in India after being directed to do so by his Syria-based handler.Masiuddin was arrested in July this year following which it was revealed that he had been directed to target foreign tourists instead of Indian locals by his handlers.”Investigation has established that on the instructions of his handler, Abu Suleiman, Musa went to Srinagar in May, 2016, to carry out a Lone Wolf attack on foreign tourists. He also participated in a Friday congregation at the Jama Masjid and waved the ISIS flag. He even planned to kill foreigners near the Mother Teresa House at the Ripon Street in Kolkata,” the NIA said on Monday.A senior J&K police official told DNA that local investigators did not find possible links between Kashmiri youth and the terror outfit. The NIA revelation might however prompt local authorities to dig out travel details of Masiuddin who hails from Labhpur in Birbhum district of WB.According to official sources in the NIA, the accused had visited two locations, one in Srinagar and other in Kolkata, and selected them as venues where he was supposed to carry out an attack using the 13 inch knife that was allegedly recovered from him following his arrest in July.This was after Masiuddin had allegedly gotten in touch with ISIS handler Shafi Armar, who is wanted by Indian agencies for activities during his time with Indian Mujahideen. The NIA also revealed that Musa met Abu Suleiman during his visit to India twice in March, 2015 and May, 2016. Suleiman encouraged him to use secured encrypted chat applications. The probe agency said Forensic Analysis of the electronic gadgets seized from the accused contained pdf files like How to survive in the West- Mujahideen, The Mujahideen Explosives Handbook by Abdel-Aziz.

From Saudi Arabia to Hyderabad, journey of ‘Army of the Caliph in South India’

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>When 30-year-old Hyderabad youth Ibrahim Yazdani returned to his city from Saudi Arabia, he was convinced that ISIS was fighting a justifiable war against President Bashar Al Assad’s forces. As soon as Ibrahim landed in India, he roped in his younger brother Illyas in a group that was later known as “Jhund Ul Khalifa al Hind Fl Bilad” or Army of the Caliph in South India.The group affiliated to the ISIS is now being considered by the NIA as the most dangerous of all modules that the probe agency busted in 2016. What did the Hyderabad module do for it to be perceived as such has now been elaborated in a chargesheet filed by the NIA last week.InceptionWhile the NIA cites their socio-religious background as one of the factors behind their decision to join ISIS, the journey to see the world as believers and non-believers actually started from trading company in Saudi Arabia when Ibrahim Yazdani, considered to be one of the main conspirators behind the module, met a Jordanian national by the name of Suhayb Al Abudi.MotivationOn his return to India, he tried multiple times to go to Syria through countries like Turkey or Greece, but was later directed by his handler to stay back in his country and do ” Allah’s work in India”. And thus the module was formed. In its analysis of the group, the NIA states the accused are followers of the pure Salafi sect of lslam, also known as the Ahle Hadeeth sect which teaches a puritanical form of lslam. ” Some of the accused are original Ahle Hadeeth followers whereas others got influenced and came in the fold of this sect. The followers of this sect believe that the Laws of the Shariah are the words of Allah and are immutable and, therefore, they want restoration of the Shariah Law. Some extreme radical followers of this sect preach a world view that the modern day democracy is against the tenets of lslam, since laws in a democracy are made by man. Such extreme radical ideologues of this sect see the world as divided between the believers and the non-believers. In their world view, even a fellow Muslim is an apostate, if he does not follow the pure Salafi interpretation of lslam”.Technology employed and the recruitment processSocial media remains the key factor for making the recruitment possible. In fact, in this particular case, NIA has listed the extent of how the module was well versed with applications to avoid getting exposed. Interestingly, the Baya’h (oath of allegiance to Abu Bakr Baghdadi) was written on a piece of paper, uploaded online and sent to an ISIS handler who in turn told the recruits to delete the same to avoid detection. Other than cloud-based instant messaging services like Telegram, the youth are claimed to have a good hold over other internet tools such as Tor browser, Amn AL Mujahid, Chat secure, Orbot, Orfox and Trillian applications.Allegiance to ISIS chief Abu Bakr BaghdadiThe loyalty towards the ISIS chief is showcased in the chargsheet at many instances during which the recruits were asked to owe their allegiance. In one instance a recruit, who is now classified as a protected witness, was told by accused Ataullah Rehman that “if he died without signing a Bay’ah, he would die the death of an ignorant (Jahiliyyat ki Maut)”.From chemicals to pellet gunsIn terms of collecting weapons, the Hyderabad module showed a lot of capability according to NIA. From travelling to Ajmer in Rajasthan to Nanded in Maharashtra. From acquiring weapons and chemicals to collecting funds, NIA has said the group was effective to acquire arms and ammunition to allegedly conduct large scale terror acts. Among the material allegedly recovered from the accused are chemicals such as Urea, 2-Chloro 9- Methyl Acridine, Methylene Chloride, Acetone, Hydrogen peroxide, Nitric Acid used to prepare explosives. Other recoveries include three knives, 17 live rounds, face masks, air guns and pellet guns which came to be known for their usage to quell anti-India protests in Kashmir.

Jordanian national radicalised Hyderabad’s ISIS suspect: NIA

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A deceased Jordanian man has emerged as the one behind “initiating” a Hyderabadi man into the fold of the jihadist ideology, an act which culminated in the formation of an Islamic State (IS)-affiliated group in India. The terrorist group later named itself the Jhund Ul Khalifa al-Hind Fl Bilad or Army of the Caliph in south India.A charge sheet filed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Saturday stated that it was between June 2013 and 2014 that Mohammed Ibrahim Yazdani, 30, met Jordanian national who went by the name Suhayb Al Abudi. Ibrahim was then working at the Riyadh-based Bazee Trading Company and made friends with the Jordanian, who was also working in the same company.According to the NIA, Abudi showed Ibrahim several videos of Syrian forces allegedly committing atrocities on Sunni Muslims. Through this, he convinced him that Syrian President Bashar Al Assad was the man responsible for these atrocities.”He (Abudi) also argued that Bashar Al Assad, the Syrian President, was committing atrocities on Sunni Muslims in Syria and the lS was waging jihad against the Assad government. lbrahim Yazdani visited India in June, 2014 for two months, but he kept communicating with Suhayb Al Abudi on Facebook,” reads the NIA document accessed by DNA.According to the probe agency, when IS declared itself a Caliphate under Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in June 2014, and seized large areas in Syria and Iraq, Ibrahim was allegedly highly influenced by the declaration of the Caliphate and had come to a firm belief that it was every Muslim’s bounden duty to perform Hijrah, i.e. migration to the Caliphate.However, his plans hit a roadblock soon when he got to know that Abudi had been killed in Syria in September 2014. The news was broken to him by an individual named Sulaiman who identified himself as the brother of Abudi.Subsequently, after months of following the changing geopolitical situation in Iraq and Syria on Twitter and other social media websites, Ibrahim managed to get in touch with a person who identified himself as, “Abu lssa Al Amriki,” in January 2015.It was Amriki who became the main handler of the Hyderabad module of IS and guided the group through Ibrahim. He advised the 30-year-old not to visit Syria or Iraq and instead directed that, “he should carry on the work of Allah from India itself.”Investigators have referred to the Hyderabad module as the most dangerous in India, citing factors like covert methods employed to recruit the youth, the way in which the members of the terrorist module communicated with each other, and the expertise of the IS handler and those employed to collect arms and ammunition.Everything seemed to go as per plan as Ibrahim managed to recruit several youth from Hyderabad including his own younger brother — till June 29, the date when the NIA finally busted the module. But investigators say that interest in the Hyderabad module was on the wane with some youth, allegedly recruited by Ibrahim — and whose identities are protected by the NIA— left the group right before an alleged terror attack could have been carried. The chargesheet lists out four Protected Witnesses PW’s, who were recruited by Ibrahim and other members of the Hyderabad module at some point of time.In its charge sheet, NIA mentions a youth who was recruited and, “then grew fearful as he did not approve of the plans for the terrorist acts by the group. He then stage-managed his exit from the group by disappearing on the 15 May, 2016, by spreading a message that he was picked up by the police/NlA and questioned about his activities.” This was more than a month before the group was busted.NIA has claimed that even after his exit, the group continued to make plans of carrying terror attacks, but this was after disbanding for a period of five days.Starting May 29, it was business as usual, with the members of the module given different duties, including collecting weapons, planning escape routes, collecting money, and so on. On June 19, three years after Ibrahim was initiated into the jihadist fold, held a meeting during an iftar at the home of another accused named Habeeb Mohammad.It was on this day that Ibrahim, who himself was radicalized by Jordanian nationals, would try to do the same to two other individuals or protected witnesses. Ten days later, however the whole operation came at a staggering halt with NIA making the first arrest.

Currency transfer: CBI case against top Mumbai oncologist

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a shocking incident, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officials have registered a case against a Padma Bhushan awardee on Friday in the ongoing crackdown against black money. The accused, a resident of Mumbai, and five others have been booked in connection with a case of fraudulent transportation of demonetized currency worth Rs 10 crore.They have been identified as Yogesh B Shiroye, Dharam Raj Thigle, Krish, Gajanand Somnath, BM Shah and Dr Suresh Advani. Dr Advani, who is associated with the CIIGMA hospital in Aurangabad, is considered to be one of the top oncologists and is known for Hematopoietic stem cell transplantation procedures. He has received many awards, including the Padma Shri in 2002 and Padma Bhushan in 2012.DNA tried to contact Dr Advani on his personal mobile number. However, calls and messages sent to him went unanswered.When asked about the allegations faced by Dr Advani, a CBI spokesperson told DNA: “He is accused in the overall case of fraudulently transporting the money. His exact role will come out after an investigation.”As for the others, CBI officials say that, other than Yogesh, four of the accused are officials of the Vaidyanath Cooperative Urban Bank Ltd (VCUBL). It is also interesting to note the director of the co-operative bank is Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Pritam Munde, the daughter of late BJP leader Gopinath Munde.CBI officials have claimed that three of the accused were transporting the demonetized cash in a car, when they were stopped by the police in the Ghatkopar area of Mumbai.These individuals were detained and during interrogation, they said that they were bank officials and the Rs 10 crore being seized from them was being transported from the head office of Vaidyanath Cooperative Urban Bank in Maharashtra’s Beed region. This old money, the probe agency claimed, was being used for money- laundering.”Approximately Rs 15 crore was allegedly deposited with the Maharashtra State Urban Co-operative Bank and Rs 10 crore was being transported back to Beed, when they (the accused) were intercepted by the police on December 15,” a CBI spokesperson said on Friday.He said that others are also likely to be involved. “Among the other accused are unknown bank officials and individuals,” he said. He also confirmed that searches were being conducted at 11 places on Friday, which included the official and residential premises of the accused persons in Pune, Mumbai, Aurangabad, and Beed in Maharashtra.However, a senior bank official from the Vaidyanath Co-operative Urban Bank contested the CBI’s claim, saying that the probe agency was misinformed. Speaking to DNA, the official claimed that the Rs 10 crore was part of the Rs 25 crore that was intended to be deposited in the bank’s Ghatkopar branch.The official added that the branch could accept only Rs 15 crore, following Rs 10 crore was to be sent to the branch in Pimpri Chinchwad from where it would have been deposited in another co-operative bank. “The whole case is a result of CBI’s mismanagement,” he said.

Centre seeks info on violence outside banks

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Facing mounting pressure from opposition parties, who continue to blame demonetization measures for the prevailing chaos at banks and ATM facilities, police departments in states and Union Territories have been asked to urgently send comprehensive details of ‘violent incidents’ that have occurred since November 8.The development comes days after the Winter Session of Parliament was washed out amidst protests by opposition parties which accused the Central Government of creating a chaotic situation resulting from demonetization measures announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.A communication to the effect was sent by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to Directors General of Police (DGPs) and Commissioners of Police (CPs) on December 19. It asks the police chiefs to treat the matter most urgently. The communication, accessed by DNA, says, “Personal attention to DGPs and CPs from Special Secretary. Please intimate the number of violent incidents along with details occurred since November 8, 2016, ie after demonetization at ATMs and banks or any cash outlets (.) Kindly send the details by return fax to MHA control room.” The development comes more than a month after the PM announced demonetization measures under which old notes of 500 and 1000 denomination were taken out of circulation. The move subsequently resulted in a shortage of currency as 500 and 1000 rupee notes formed close to 86 per cent of the total currency in circulation.As a result, banks – both private and government – as well as ATM facilities had seen massive number of people queuing up to either exchange old 500 and 1000 notes in their possession or to simply withdraw money for daily expenses. The deadline to exchange the old currency notes , as per the guidelines issued by Reserve Bank of India, was set to December 30.Official government sources told DNA on Tuesday that the move to ask for details of violent incidents was due to reports emerging from multiple states that indicated a breakdown of law and order.There have been a number of violent incidents reported from outside banks that includes pelting of stones by bank customers, lathi-charge by police forces. Last month, more than a hundred people were booked for pelting stones and clashing with the employees of a bank in Sujru village in Uttar Pradesh over exchanging of old currency notes. While violent incidents outside banks have grabbed the news headline, opposition leaders had forged a union during the Winter Session of the Parliament attacking Modi government for the move.

7.98 crore rupees recovered from 15 bank lockers in Pune, CBI registers case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Had it not been for credible intelligence received by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), smooth but illegal transactions taking place in the Parvati Towers of Parvati Gaon in Pune would have taken quite some time to get noticed.The probe agency on Monday registered a criminal case against Sudhir Puranik, director of Worldwide Oilfield Machine (WOM) Pvt Ltd, a multinational companywith its headquarters based in Houston, Texas and other unknown officials of the Bank of Maharashtra (BOM) for allegedly obtaining new currency notes to the tune of rupees 7.98 crores.Interestingly, the WOM office as a BOM branch is located in the same compound and the alleged exchange of new currency notes had been taking place smoothly since November 8, the day Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the demonitization measures. The lid finally blew off when the Income Tax department conducted a raid on the Parvati branch of BOM and recovered a whopping 7,97,95,500 crore rupees from 15 lockers maintained in the name of WOM.Among other accused in the case are Mangesh Annachhatra the Chief Executive Officer of WOM and Satyen Gathani of the Ishaniya Hyundai Motors.The WOM, as per official company records,is a private limited company incorporated on December 19, 1985 with a registered address as 6th floor of Parvati Towers. The multi-national company deals in manufacture of special purpose machinery, such as gate valves and has facilities in Aberdeen, Scotland, Dubai, UAE and Singapore.Gathani, too is a designated partner in Pune-based Ishanya Motors Llp, a company dealing in sale,maintenance and repair of motor vehicles and retail sale of automotive fuel.According to the CBI, Sudhir, Annachhatra and Gathan, along with unknown bank officials, entered into a criminal conspiracy to obtain the note including the newly introduced 2000 and 500 rupee notes. Sources in the probe agency said that Gathani had obtained the notes from various other banks and had been handing over the same to Sudhir who filled the lockers with the same.According to CBI, the accused were booked under IPC sections 420 (cheating) and 120 B (criminal conspiracy) as well as other sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

NIA chargesheet details how Pathankot Air Base attack unfolded

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Monday filed a chargesheet in connection with the January 2nd Pathankot airbase attack, naming Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief Masood Azhar and three others of the proscribed outfit as accused. The development comes in the midst of a diplomatic rift between India and China after the latter stonewalled Indian efforts to get UN sanctions against Azhar and JeM.The agency has showcased evidences against the JeM that include DNA samples collected from the four slain Pakistani nationals, footprints of one of the terrorists obtained from Bamiyal, packages of food and drinks consumed by the slain men from the sites, and cars which they used before entering the Air Base. Among other evidences is a note which the NIA says was from Mahindra XUV vehicle recovered which read, “Jaish E Muhamad Zindabad Tanghdar se le kar Samba Kathua Rajbagh Aur delhi tak Afzal Guru Shadeed Kay Jan nisar Tum ko meltay rahege. Insha Allah. A.G.S. 25- 12-15” which translates to ‘Long live Jaish-e-Mohammad. From Samba, Kathua, Rajbagh (areas in Jammu and Kashmir) to Delhi, you will find men willing to lay their lives for Martyr Afzal Guru.’The slip was signed off on December 25,2015 as AGS shot for Afzal Guru Squad.The NIA-led probe has established that four Pakistani Nationals who attacked the air base belonged to the recently formed Afzal Guru Squad which works under the JeM command based in Pakistan.While the chargesheet could likely be used by Indian diplomats to highlight the role of Azhar in the Pathankot attack at international forums, the probe has revealed startling details about the attack that claimed lives of seven security personnel during an 80-hour long stand-off inside the Indian Air Force station located in Punjab’s Pathankot area.The chargesheet states that the four Pakistani nationals identified as Nasir Hussain, Hafiz Abu Bakar, Umar Farooq and Abdul Qayum were residents of Vehari (Punjab), Gujranwala (Punjab), Sanghar (Sindh) and Sukkur (Sindh) of Pakistan respectively.All the men had infiltrated into India through the forest area near the Simbal Border Outpost on 30th December at 2 am which means almost two days before the attack. According to NIA, the terrorists, were not only successful in avoiding getting traced from 2am on December 30 till January 1 early morning (when they entered into the air base), but also avoided detection for almost a day after hiding themselves in a ‘nallah’ inside the base. In fact, one of the men named Nasir made calls from inside the base waiting to launch the attack.The first call was made at 8.40 am to a man named Khayam Bhatti who, according to NIA, runs a local merchandise shop shop in Rum area of Sialkot in Pakistan. The conversation did not take place so Nasir called again on a different Pakistani number an hour later and requested to speak to his mother.”While speaking to the lady addressed as his mother, Nasir asked her to record his conversation on the mobile set. During his conversation with her, Nasir mentioned about one “Ustad” who was supposed to come to her with his “Wasihat” after his death. Nasir also asked her to host a “dawat” (feast) for his “derawala friends” after his death. The terrorist, Nasir also took the names of some of the members in his family / relatives, viz, Mudassir, Mariyam and Altamash, in the conversation. Nasir also disclosed that they were hiding inside the Air Force Station (referred to as Camp in conversation) and waiting to carry out the terror attack,”NIA said.NIA findings are however yet to find coherence with that of the NSG, which has maintained that not four but six militants had attacked the Air Force station.Moreover, Salwinder Singh, the Gurdaspur superintendent of police (SP), who, on December 31, was allegedly abducted by the same group of JeM militants, has been given a clean chit in the NIA probe after being on the scanner of the agency for several months. The agency has established that the claims made by Singh were founded and suggested that the JeM were not aware of the fact that Salwinder wasa a cop. It was only after his associate Rajesh Verma told them that they came to know about his profession

Pampore attack despite strong intelligence warning

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>About 24 hours before a convoy of Rashtriya Rifles was ambushed near the Kadlibal area in Pampore town on Saturday afternoon, intelligence agencies had dispatched information of a “possible terror attack” on the Srinagar-Jammu Highway.While intelligence agencies based in the Valley have, on multiple occasions, dispatched similar inputs, it is the brazenness of this particular ambush that has security forces, especially in areas close to National Highways, concerned.Officials told DNA on Sunday that not only has the highway crossing through Pampore area become increasingly vulnerable to such ambush, but the elaborate planning that takes place before such attacks is a growing concern.For instance, the intelligence input before the Pampore attack on Saturday, in which three Rashtriya Rifles personnel lost their lives, had stated that proscribed outfits were planning a major stand-off with the Indian armed forces on the highway. It even had specifics that there was a strong possibility that convoys would be targeted using Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs).According to a senior security official in Kashmir, at 12.30 pm on Friday, a message based on human intelligence was dispatched. It warned security forces of the possible attack.”Credible input suggests that militants have planned IED blasts followed by firing on NHW or a major town today (Friday). Take all necessary precautions,” read the portion of the input.According to some senior officials of the Jammu and Kashmir police, all precautions were being taken but the race against time was lost when around 2 pm, three motorcycle-borne gunmen ambushed the convoy. The exchange of fire lasted around 10 minutes, following which the militants escaped.What has the security establishment now thinking is the elaborate ambush plans, starting from planting IEDs, surprise attacks on convoys and a well thought-out escape route.Sources say areas in city outskirts like Pampore in south Kashmir is considered more vulnerable to such attacks, especially since the Entrepreneur Development Institute (EDI) is located near Sempore. The EDI, too, has come under attack on more than one occasion and the area is one of the link roads that connects south Kashmir with Srinagar city.The area is strategic for militant activities as it is located between Tral, Pulwama areas like Kakapora, Ratnipora and Khrew. On the other side of the river are open vast fields, which provides a good escape route.”The presence of militants in Pulwama and in areas close to the banks of Jhelum river is the reason that the highway has witnessed so many attacks,”said a senior J&K police official.This year alone, seven major attacks on the Srinagar-Jammu highway, mainly in south Kashmir, have taken place, with Pampore being the fourth such attack in the Valley since August.What is more troublesome is the indication that emanates from ambush. They suggest the capability and network of groups like the Laskhar-e-Toiba (LeT) and Hizb-ul-Mujahideen (HuM), which are suspected to behind the Saturday attack.IEDs are an added worry. Sources say the use if IEDs had decreased since the armed insurgency erupted in Kashmir in late 80s.One of the first IED blasts that announced the arrival of insurgency was in July 1988 in the Lal Chowk area of Srinagar. Over the years, convoys have witnessed the same tactics. However, the counter-insurgency witnessed in the Valley in the past three decades had rendered the usage of IEDs to a minimal, with militants resorting to attacks using grenades.A senior intelligence official told DNA that local youth who who joined HuM or LeT in the past few years did not get training in making IEDs, but now some of them are trained by “foreign militants, “referring to Pakistani nationals fighting under LeT. It is likely that local militants, who mostly make the Hizb ranks, might have received training in making IEDs as well.Last month, a bullet-proof ‘Rakshak’ jeep of the police came under attack in Awantipora of Pulwama district, which injured three police officials.

Two more RBI officials held in currency exchange fraud, arrests a big blow to regulator

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Two more officials of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) were arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Saturday for their alleged role in currency conversion fraud cases.The arrests, coming in less than a week’s time, have caused much discomfort for the central bank, which had maintained that the one arrested earlier was a junior-level functionary. The fresh arrests put into question the role of its officials involved in currency exchange process, initiated following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s note ban announcement on November 8.The two accused—identified as Sadananda Naika and AK Kavin—are posted as Senior Special Assistant and Special Assistant RBI’s cash department in Bengaluru. The first to be arrested, K Michael, was a Senior Special Assistant in the Issue Department of RBI’s regional office.Elaborating on the arrests, a CBI official said the accused fraudulently gave away new currency notes to unknown RBI officials and others in replacement of demonetized notes to the tune of Rs 1.99 crore, in violation of the currency exchange limits imposed by the RBI.”It is alleged that both the accused and other unknown officials of RBI, Bengaluru entered in criminal conspiracy with unknown others,” said the official. Among several sections of the Prevention of Corruption Act and the Indian Penal Code, the duo was slapped with charges of criminal conspiracy, fraud, criminal breach of trust and so on.The arrests come after the RBI, earlier this week, claimed that “elaborate instructions” had been given to bank managements to keep in check untoward transactions.It was the arrest of Parashivamurthy—a cashier of the State Bank of Mysore in a branch in Chamarajnagar district for allegedly exchanging demonetized notes to the tune of Rs 1.51 crore with Rs 100 notes—that led the agency to Michael. Further probe revealed the role of more officials.In another incident, CBI registered case against KL Bhoyar, Assistant Commercial Manager, Central Railway, CST Mumbai. The agency said Bhoyar allegedly exchanged demonetized currency worth Rs 8.22 lakh (approx) with new Rs 2,000 notes and legal tender of Rs 100 notes at booking counters at CST, Mumbai and Kalyan in Thane district. The agency also recovered Rs 2.2 lakh cash—in denomination of Rs 100—in subsequent raids.

VVIP chopper scam: CBI yet to get full info on money trail from 8 countries contacted

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has not received complete responses in any of the Letter Rogatories (LR’s) it sent to eight countries to seek information on money trail related to the infamous AgustaWestland scam.According to official sources, the probe agency has sent eight LRs, which are basically judicial requests, since 2013 and has received “partial information” from six countries. Two of the eight countries have not even sent partial information even after the probe agency registered an official FIR on March, 2013.According to CBI officials, the probe agency during its investigation, that will enter its fourth year in March next year, sent LRs to Italy, Tunisia, UAE, Singapore, Mauritius, British Virgin Island, UAE and Switzerland. Excluding Singapore and UAE, six countries have sent a “partial execution report” which means that if the probe agency had sent 10 questions seeking information related to the AgustaWestland deal, only some of the queries have received a response.Official sources told DNA on Thursday that investigators probing the Rs 3,726 crore chopper scam have sent multiple reminders to the authorities in the eight countries requesting them to send out information about the scam. The latest reminder was sent to Mauritius which sent a response in November this year however the response too was a partial execution report.”Its a massive investigation and a major part of the probe involves accessing documents and data lying in various countries. When a probe such as AgustaWestland spreads to multiple countries, coordinating with authorities of those countries can be time consuming,” a senior CBI official told DNA, adding that authorities abroad have been cooperating with the probe agency so far.The CBI made its first arrests in the case on December 9 when it took into custody former Indian Air Force chief SP Tyagi, his cousin Sanjeev Tyagi and advocate Gautam Khaitan in the case related to procurement of 12 AW VVIP choppers from UK-based firm during the UPA-2 regime.According to the FIR, the CBI contended that in 2005, the former air chief abused his official position to change the consistent stand of the Indian Air Force (IAF) on the service ceiling of the VVIP choppers from 6000 metres to 4500 metres.On January 1, 2014, India scrapped the contract with AgustaWestland over alleged breach of contractual obligations and charges of paying kickbacks.The CBI alleged that the bribes were routed through multiple companies in India and abroad and involved middlemen and other individuals, including British national Christian Michel and Italian nationals Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa. Companies including Finmeccanica, AgustaWestland, Mohali-based IDS Infotech, Aeromatrix, IDS Tunisia and IDS Mauritius have also been named in the 2013 FIR by the CBI.The accused were first sent to CBI custody twice by a Delhi court. The CBI in its argument seeking custody claimed that crucial information was collected from three countries — Italy, Switzerland and Mauritius — via LRs and the accused were required to be confronted with it to unearth the larger conspiracy in the chopper deal case. Interestingly, authorities in Italy too has sent partial execution report, sources said.

RBI official held in new notes fraud

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In yet another sensational case of demonetization fraud, CBI officials nabbed an RBI official in Bengaluru on Tuesday for his alleged involvement in the illegal exchange of currency notes. The official, identified asK Michael, had been posted as a Senior Special Assistant in the Issue Department of RBI’s regional office in Bengaluru.According to CBI sources, the accused had allegedly been involved in the conversion of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes worth Rs 6 lakh into Rs 100 notes at the State Bank of Mysore’s (SBM) Kollegal branch in Chamrajpet district.“Large amounts of new notes in Rs 2,000 and Rs 500 were kept with lower-value notes for distribution to the bank’s branches and state treasury offices in the district. Out of these amounts the accused exchanged over six lakh rupees,” a CBI official said.Michael had been sent from his regional office to Kollegal just a few days before the demonetization measures were announced by the Prime Minister on November 8. Sources said that he had been sent to Kollegal with Rs 66 lakh worth of cash that had to be filled in the bank chests and report back to his office. However, sources added, he was approached by a now arrested SBM official, identified as Parashivamurthy, who convinced him to commit the crime.Parashivamurthy worked as a cashier of the State Bank of Mysore in a branch in Chamarajnagar district. Last week he had been booked by the CBI for allegedly exchanging Rs. 1.51 crore of unaccounted money in demonetized notes with Rs. 100 notes.After interrogating the cashier and extracting his confession, CBI officials closed in on Michael and arrested him for his alleged complicity in the crime. The development comes even as the number of public officials arrested by the CBI for alleged fraud and corruption post-demonetization reached 16 this week.Those arrested include officials of banks and post offices located in Hyderabad and Bengaluru and have mostly been accused of illegally disbursing new currency notes to private individuals.RBI Deputy Governors R Gandhi and SS Mundra spoke about the arrested official during a press conference on Tuesday. They confirmed that Michael was a junior functionary of the RBI.Deputy Governor SS Mundra said, “There have been media reports about some of transactions noticed in various bank branches and the alleged involvement of bank staff. We have issued instructions to all bank management to do central data checking. Whenever any untoward transaction/action is noticed, due investigations will be carried out,” said Mundra.He added, “The concerned employee has been suspended, we have instituted a probe.”Meanwhile, the CBI on Tuesday said that it has registered a total of 10 cases related to crime committed after demonetization. So far the CBI has registered four cases in Karnataka, four in Hyderabad, one in Rajasthan, and one in Kolkata, in connection with the illegal conversion of currency.CBI sources said that the total amount of cash involved in these 10 cases is approximately Rs 19 crore, adding that a cashier working at the Bank of Baroda, Behala branch, Ranjit Kumar Bhattacharya had been booked for allegedly converting currency worth Rs 50 lakh in violation of laid down rules post-demonetization.Post the PM’s announcement, demonetization fraud has lead to the arrest of some senior functionaries. “A Janata Dal (Secular) (JDS) leader was also arrested from Hubballi in Bengaluru on December 10 in connection with separate cases relating to alleged illegal conversion of currency post-demonetization,” said a CBI official.Besides the JD(S) leader, known as KC Veerendra, two middlemen identified as Thipeswamy and Venkatesh who are residents of the Chitradurga districts of Karnataka, and unknown officials of four banks — State Bank of India, State Bank of Mysore, ICICI Bank and Kotak Mahindra have also been named in the FIR in this case.TUESDAY’S CATCHK Michael, a senior special assistant with the RBI: Helped convert Rs 6 lakh money
KC Veerendra, JD(S) leader: Rs 5.7 crore in Rs 2,000 notes found at his home; besides a Lamborghini, Volvo, MV Agusta, Ducati 749, multiple luxury apartments and a huge amount of gold.
SC Jayachandra, government engineer’s brother: Raids at his home revealed massive unexplained cash and wealth.

VVIP chopper scam: Ex-IAF chief SP Tyagi drags in then PMO, says I am not running away

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It was a day of high drama in the court of Metropolitan Magistrate Sujit Saurabh on Saturday when SP Tyagi, former Air Force chief, was sent to four days’ police custody, following his arrest by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Friday for allegedly receiving kickbacks in the AgustaWestland helicopter deal.The prosecution and the defence dropped high-profile names and levelled allegations against each other’s clients in a hearing that lasted for over three hours. In fact, the judge said that if he allowed the proceedings to continue, they will end only after three days.The highlight of the day came when Tyagi, who requested the court to speak in his own defence. This was after the prosecution accused him of buying agricultural land between 2005 and 2007 when he was the IAF chief.While the prosecution argued that fresh evidence had cropped up as a result of a judicial request the CBI had sent to some countries seeking information on the scam, the defence were belligerent, suggesting that the decision to procure the choppers came from the then Prime Minister’s Office.Tyagi is accused of influencing the IAF’s decision to tailor chopper specifications to suit Finmeccanica subsidiary AgustaWestland’s bid, resulting in what is now known as the Rs 3,726-crore AgustaWestland chopper scam.The CBI claims that kickbacks worth Rs 423 crore were paid through various middlemen, who routed the money using a maze of shell companies. Tyagi’s lawyer Gautam Khaitan and cousins Sanjeev, Rajiv and Sandeep are also accused of making the deal possible.”Yes, I have bought land and sold it off, too. But I started buying land from 2002 onwards, and if that proves I am corrupt, I have nothing to say. I can provide them (CBI) with the land records and all the data they need. Everything is accounted for,” the former IAF chief said. He said that if the alleged land deals were the basis for his arrest, he wanted to let the CBI know that he will be not be running anywhere and was ready for questioning.”Whenever the CBI asked me to come, I did that. If they want to ask anything, I am ready, I am not running away. I am not going anywhere, I am here,” the 71 year-old said. He added that the CBI had been treating him well. Sanjeev and Khaitan were also arrested on Friday.The magistrate sent the three accused to police custody till December 14. The CBI had sought a 10-day custody, claiming crucial information was collected from three countries — Italy, Switzerland and Mauritius – – via letters rogatory (LR) and they wanted to confront the accused with it. The prosecution also told the court that CBI had collected evidence from the Switzerland residence of Guido Haschke, the Swiss-Italian businessman accused in the FIR. The prosecution said the evidence was collected from Haschke’s mother.Defence counsel Siddharth Luthra opposed the CBI plea, citing multiple reasons. One of them was that the FIR was registered over three years ago and there was no fresh ground for the arrests now. The counsel also cited a separate probe into the chopper scam by the Enforcement Directorate, in which Khaitan was given bail and that no evidence had emerged to link Tyagi. The defence argued that since Tyagi had been cooperating with the probe agency and had appeared before the CBI whenever he was summoned, there was no need for custodial interrogation.”The arrest is only to use third-degree methods on the accused. By third degree, I don’t torture but what the CBI does is not any less either,” said Luthra. Hitting back at the defence, the prosecution said that the CBI was a premier agency of the country and does not arrest anyone randomly.CHARGESSP Tyagi: Allegedly met middlemen, accused of securing the deal, seven times when he was the Air Force chief. The Milan Court of Appeals had ruled that the contract involved payoffs to Indian officials, including Tyagi. The CBI is yet to establish if the money reached Tyagi.Sanjeev Tyagi: Sanjeev alias Julie, a cousin of Tyagi, made acquaintance with Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa and signed a consultancy contract with Gordian Services Sarl in Tunisia. Gordian Services belonged to Haschke and Gerosa, both accused in the scam. The agency found out that after May 2004, 1.26 lakh euros and 2 lakh euros after February 2005, camouflaged as consultancy fee, were paid to the Tyagi brothers as kickbacks.Gautam Khaitan: Accused of setting up shell companies that received huge amounts of kickbacks. Bruno Spagnolini, CEO of AgustaWestland, started giving payoffs to Haschke and Gerosa Gordon Services Sarl. Khaitan, legal advisory to IDS Infotech, introduced the middlemen to Satish Bagrodia and Partab K Aggarwal, managing directors of IDS. This firm received 2.166 million euros from Agusta between November 2007 and April 2010.FAMILYSPEAKSeveral members of the Tyagi family accused the government of raking up the issue to divert attention from demonetization. “The government had done a major blunder by introducing demonetization and now wants to divert public attention by arresting a former IAF chief,” said one family member, who did not wish to be named. Another family member, also requesting anonymity, said: “Chief (SP Tyagi) is 71 and a heart patient. He underwent an eye surgery 10 days ago but nothing stopped the current dispensation from taking him to court. He has fought three wars for the country and we are hopeful he will come out of this as well.”

Italian job does former air chief Tyagi in

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Former Air Chief Marshal SP Tyagi, his cousin Sanjeev and senior advocate Gautam Khaitan were on Friday arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for their alleged roles in the infamous Rs 3,726-crore VVIP chopper case, also known as the AgustaWestland scam. It is for the first time that a former IAF chief is being arrested in a corruption case.CBI sources told DNA that Tyagi had allegedly met middlemen accused of securing the controversial deal seven times when he was the Air Force chief. They said that the three were called to the agency headquarters at Lodhi Road and questioned for hours before being taken into custody.The arrests come about eight ( 8 or 9?) months after The Milan Court of Appeals — equivalent to an Indian high court — ruled that the AgustaWestland contract involved payoffs to Indian officials, including Tyagi.Tyagi is accused of influencing the IAF’s decision to tailor chopper specifications to suit Italian multinational Finmeccanica’s British subsidiary AgustaWestland. The service ceiling (height of flying capacity) was brought down from 6,000 metres to 4,500 metres, without taking into account the concerns of the Ministry of Defence.According to CBI officials, the Air Force “conceded to reduce the service ceiling from 6,000 metres to 4,500 metres as mandatory with Tyagi’s approval.” Tyagi is alleged to have met AgustaWestland middlemen seven times – from 2004 to 2007 – and travelled to Italy thrice after his retirement. CBI sources said that it was in 2004, when Tyagi was vice-chief, that Finmeccanica approached him for the first time.Sources told DNA that Tyagi allegedly met Georgio Zapa, Chief Operating Officer (COO) the of Italian aerospace and defence group, almost three months after he became the IAF chief. CBI officials said that the reported meeting took place on February 15, 2005.On January 1, 2014, India scrapped the contract with AgustaWestland over alleged breach of contractual obligations and charges of paying kickbacks of Rs 423 crore. The CBI alleged that the bribes were routed through multiple companies in India and abroad and involved middlemen and other individuals, including British national Christian Michel and Italian nationals Guido Haschke and Carlo Gerosa.Finmeccanica, AgustaWestland, Mohali-based IDS Infotech, Aeromatrix, IDS Tunisia and IDS Mauritius have also been named by the CBI. Even more interesting is the role of Tyagi’s three cousins – Sanjeev, Rajiv and Sandeep (known as Tyagi brothers) – who have been accused of using the influence of their cousin brother for securing the deal.CBI documents accessed by DNA detail the cosy relationship of the accused with the IAF and the level of inroads that the Tyagi brothers made into the Indian bureaucracy through diligent lobbying. Sanjeev was also arrested by the CBI and it is likely that the others named in the FIR will face action.Elaborating on the role of Khaitan, CBI officials said that his alleged role started when Bruno Spagnolini, CEO of AgustaWestland, started giving payoffs to middlemen Guido Ralph Hashke and Carlo Gerosa through a Tunisia- based consultancy named Gordon Services Sarl. Khaitan was previously arrested by the Enforcement Directorate in the same case and is accused of setting up shell companies in India before the AgustaWestland deal went through.

Demonetization: Rise of the new ‘middleman’

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As investigative agencies continue to crack down on the financial crimes across India, a new breed of middlemen has emerged after demonetization. These individuals— many of who do not have a criminal background—are targeting banks, and, more recently, post offices, making them a hub for illegal activities.One of the men on the CBI’s radar is K Sudheer Babu. Accused of masterminding illegal activities in the registered post offices in Hyderabad, Babu, who belongs to the 2011 cadre of the Indian Postal Service (IPS), was serving as the Senior Superintendent of Post Office, Hyderabad City Division, when his name popped up on the CBI’s radar.Four others working with him — Shaikh Abdul Ghani, G Ravi Teja, K Suresh Kumar and G Srinivas — have been arrested. Babu, however, is absconding. The modus operandi of Babu and his men was simple. Investigating officials revealed that old currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000, exceeding the limits announced by RBI, were brought into post offices and banks in Hyderabad for replacement and then fraudulently exchanged for new Rs 2,000 notes. Officials estimate that the total amount involved in illegal transactions from these post offices in Hyderabad was Rs 2.95 crore. “The criminal cases so far have been reported from Hyderabad city but investigators are keeping a close watch on post offices across India,” said a CBI source. Sources also added that searches have been conducted at 11 places so far which include residential/office premises of the accused persons in Hyderabad.They add that incriminating documents, laptops and mobile phones with cash worth Rs 17.02 lakh in new currency notes of Rs 2,000 denominations were seized.These middlemen carried out the crimes almost after the Prime Minister’s announcement on demonetization. CBI sources said that the first case was registered on November 24. In this case, an individual, yet to be identified, brought in Rs 36 lakh into the post office of Hyderabad City Division, when the CBI revealed that Babu instructed G Revathi, the Sub Post Master (SPM), Himayat Nagar branch, to falsify records that this money in new currency notes had been disbursed to multiple individuals. This however was not the case.Further investigations have revealed that apart from the four officials arrested, close to half a dozen post office officials are currently under the scanner of the CBI. In three fraud cases filed between November 24 and December 6, these officials are alleged to have involved in illegal activity, along with two office assistants.

CBI books bank manager for fraudulently disbursing new currency; Rs 5.91 lakh old currency recovered in raid

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A senior bank manager in Bengaluru was booked for alleged criminal conspiracy and cheating by issuing 149 demand drafts to a Pune-based firm in exchange of old currency notes, cancelling the same drafts, and thereafter converting old notes into new ones fraudulently.The bank manager heads the Basavanagudi branch of Central Bank of India, said agency officials adding that an FIR also named directors of a Bengaluru-based private firm dealing in incense sticks.The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) which is handling the case, said that subsequent searches at the residences and offices of accused led to recovery of incriminating documents including bank vouchers, counterfoils, DDs, property documents, hard disks and cash of Rs 5,91,500 (approx) in old 500 and 1,000 denominations.A case under section 120-B (Criminal conspiracy), 420(cheating) of the Indian Penal Code and Section 13(2) read with section 13(1)(d) of the PC Act, 1988 was registered against the bank manager, identified as Lakshmi Narayana, as well as two directors of Omkar Parimal Mandir named S Gopal and Ashwin G Sunkur, after the probe agency conducted a surprise check at the bank after receiving actionable intelligence. Officials said the alleged crime took place in a span of just four days, that is, a week after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s November 8 announcement of demonetization. CBI officials said that between November 15 and 18; the manager accepted demonetized currency notes of Rs 500 and 1,000.The money was then converted into demand drafts of Rs 50,000 each and issued them in favour of a Pune-based firm thus violating the guidelines issued by the Reserve Bank of India. The demand drafts were then allegedly purchased by two individuals who are designated as directors of a private company named Omkar Parimal Mandir.“It was alleged that Branch Manager, Central Bank of India had violated the guidelines of Reserve Bank of India and issued 149 DDs for amounts less than Rs 50,000 each in favour of a private firm based in Pune for an aggregate amount of Rs 71,49,000 (approx) by accepting old de-monetized currency notes of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000,” said CBI spokesperson Devpreet Singh.She added that the DDs were purchased by two partners of a Bengaluru-based private firm after depositing old currencies in cash. “However, the amounts were staggered and 149 DDs were issued for amount less than Rs 50,000. This was allegedly done by the accused fraudulently to convert the old demonetised notes into cash. Subsequently these DDs have been cancelled and encashed by the accused. Thereby clandestinely old notes got converted into new notes,” the CBI spokesperson said.CBI said that the FIR also lists unknown officials of the Central Bank of India and other unknown private individuals thereby suggesting that more arrests might follow in this case.

PIL against government’s decision to appoint Gujarat cadre IPS as interim chief of CBI

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A Public-Interest Litigation (PIL) was filed in the Supreme Court on Monday seeking quashing of government’s decision of appointing Rakesh Asthana, a Gujarat cadre IPS officer, as the interim director of the Central Bureau of Investigation. The PIL also seeks appointment of a Court-selected person as the interim Director of CBI as well as a meeting of the selection committee, which consists of the Prime Minister, the Leader of the largest Opposition party and the Chief Justice of India, to appoint a regular director of the probe agency. The PIL states that the government took a series of steps in a “completely mala fide,arbitrary and illegal manner to ensure that Rakesh Asthana was given the charge of CBI Director and “prematurely curtailed the tenure of and transferred Mr. R K Dutta,Special Director, CBI, to the Ministry of Home Affairs”.The PIL has been filed by Kamal Kant Jaswal, the president of Delhi based Common Cause through his counsel Prashant Bhushan. The PIL cited landmark judgment in Vineet Narain case in which the court had directed that there should be a selection committee to identify a panel of names for the appointment of Director CBI, and thereafter the final selection to be made by the Appointments Committee of Cabinet (ACC).The PIL also cited that the Delhi Special Police Establishment (DSPE) Act, 1946, , which governs the CBI, was amended in 2003 vide the Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) Act, 2003 to state that the Director CBI shall be appointed by the Central Government on the recommendations of the Central Vigilance Commissioner, the Vigilance Commissioners and two Secretaries to the Government of India.”As the above mechanism was not found sufficient to insulate the CBI Director, Section 4A of the DSPE Act, 1946 was further amended vide the Lokpal andLokayuktas Act, 2013 (the Lokpal Act) to provide that the CBI Director shall be appointed by the Central Government on there commendations of the selection committee,” the PIL read.Th petitioner has claimed that the Central Government did not convene a meeting of the selection committee ” even though it was fully aware that Mr. Anil Sinha was going to demit the office of CBI Director on 02.12.2016″. The central government had last week made Asthana, a Gujarat cadre 1984 batch IPS officer, the interim director as the current chief probe agency Anil Sinha relinquished his charge. The decision came two days after CBI Special Director R K Dutta, who was among the frontrunners for the top post, was shifted to the Home Ministry as a Special Secretary leaving the agency without a director for the first time in 10 years. Asthana,who was serving as the additional director of the probe agency had previously headed the state SIT that probed burning of Sabarmati Express train at Godhra in February 2002. The SIT had then found that the burning of a coach of Sabarmati Express, which claimed lives of 59 people, was a “carefully planned and meticulously executed criminal conspiracy”. The 1984 batch officer has also supervised the fodder scam probe allegedly involving then chief minister of Bihar Lalu Prasad Yadav.

NIA arrests two more people suspected in series of court blasts

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Furthering its probe into a series of blasts that took place in various court premises in southern states of India, the National Investigation (NIA) arrested two more individuals on Tuesday afternoon. The number of arrested individuals now stands at five, with the probe agency claiming that the accused men belong to a new outfit which pledges allegiance to Al-Qaeda.NIA spokesperson Alok Mittal on Tuesday said that Mohammed Ayub Ali, who had been detained last night, was put under arrest along with another youth named Shamsudeen. Both are 25-years-old. Ali, a native of Madurai, works as a public liaison officer for a hearing aid company. Shamsudeen is also a resident of Madurai and his name cropped up during interrogation of others arrested by the NIA. According to the probe agency, the suspects (all in their 20s), belong to a relatively new outfit named Base Movement which had taken responsibility for the low intensity blasts in Andhra Pradesh, Kerala and Karnataka. The outfit claimed responsibility for at least three low-intensity blasts that took place in the court premises of Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Kerala by dispatching a letter to the authorities bearing a map of India and a photo of slain Al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden. A similar letter was sent ahead of French President Francois Hollande’s visit to India in January this year.The other three accused were identified as Abbas Ali (27), Suleiman (23) and Samsum Karim Raja. Abbas is a resident of Ismailpuram area in Madurai. According to NIA he studied up to 8th standard and is a painter by profession. NIA said that Abbas also ran a library in the name Darul-ilim’ in Madurai. Suleiman, originally from Madurai, works in a software firm and was based in Chennai. NIA said that he was the “main leader of the terrorist gang”. Samsum, the NIA said, is a B.Com graduate and runs a chicken broiler shop at Kannimara Koil street in Madurai. ​Officials believe that the Base Movement is a result of the regrouping of an Islamist outfit by the name al Ummah. Nagapattinam native Abu Bakr Siddique, 51, one of the master-minds in the Bangalore blast at the BJP office in 2013, is believed to be the leader of the outfit. Siddique was absconding between 1999 and 2011 and police is investigating if he, like some of the al Ummah members, left to join the jihad in Afghanistan.

Zakir Naik’s YouTube videos a concern, says NIA

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The government might have blocked websites owned by the Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), but its founder Zakir Naik continues to thrive on YouTube, where thousands of his speeches remain.The National Investigation Agency (NIA), currently probing Naik on terror charges, maintains that it has written to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) on the YouTube videos, but there seems to be little movement from the ministry.The NIA, during search operations on IRF premises, confiscated video tapes and DVDs of Naik’s public speeches. The NIA says that examining the speeches was a lengthy process as the quantity of videos were poor, but said that the YouTube speeches were a different ball game all together.A single YouTube channel named Dr Zakir Naik has close to 3 lakh subscriptions and has 1,615 videos. The latest was uploaded a week ago. Islamic Productions, which too regularly uploads the preacher’s speeches, has a total view of 2.3 crore, though the channel was started in January this year. Dr Zakir Naik – IRF, another channel, has 35,211 subscribers, with 7,081,194 views. Other channels like MIK Islamic Media and Voice of Zakir Naik also have heavy traffic.”We have written to the MHA to block YouTube videos. It is a time-consuming process, but, for now, we are focusing on the videos we confiscated from IRF premises,” said an official, adding that the videos will be examined by a team of experts with a good hold on comparative religion, something which Naik had mastered over the years.The NIA claims that the initial analysis of the videos of Naik’s speeches suggests that the preacher allegedly “crossed the line of legality” in some of his seminars.”Websites of IRF as well as of Islamic International School have already been blocked. IRF is also very active on Twitter and Facebook and the process of blocking the pages and IDs has been initiated. YouTube does remain a concern but we are sure the issue will be resolved in a few days,” said the official.Requests by investigating agencies, like blocking of IP addresses and websites, are generally forwarded by an MHA panel to the Ministry of Information Technology, and are implemented by the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeITY).Before the NIA had booked Naik under terror charges, an MHA official told DNA that no decision has been taken on whether the YouTube videos will be blocked. For now, the NIA is awaiting the ministry’s decision.The blocking of YouTube videos, however, will not be the end of the problem, according to NIA officials. While the agency has identified some YouTube channels run by IRF, monitoring individuals uploading videos of Naik will be a tough task.(With inputs from Amrita Nayak Dutta)

Action against me is communal says Zakir Naik, NIA says speeches suggest preacher crossed the line

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Islamic preacher Dr. Zakir Naik in a public statement released today, the first one after being booked under terror charges, stated that he will “pursue all legal options to repeal the ban” on the Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), an organisation he founded almost two decades ago. “By the grace of the Almighty, my work is now spread across the world and a ban in India, however agonizing, will not ruin everything. I had mentioned in my first letter that God willing many Muslim countries will roll the red carpet for this humble servant of Allah. I have received from several Muslim countries a response better than what I had expected. I will continue my work and rebuild. But India is my home, my roots, and I will fight this ban come what may. God-willing, I will pursue all legal options to repeal this ban. Because Islam has taught me not to let an injustice go by. I will fight, be sure of that,”the statement read. As the statement was released on Friday, officials of National Investigative Agency (NIA), which is currently probing the televangelist, claimed that initial analysis of videos of Naik’s speeches suggest the preacher allegedly “crossed the line of legality” is some of his seminars. The probe agency, during the search operations on IRF premises , had confiscated video tapes and DVDs of Zakir Naik’s public speeches and while the agency said that analysis of the same will be a “lengthy task” initial findings suggested that some of Naik’s speeches were violating NIA booked Naik and others under Section 18 of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) that relates to terror conspiracy, Section 10 and 13 of UAPA which deal with being member of an unlawful association and punishment for unlawful activities respectively, and Section 153A of IPC (inciting communal hatred). “Our probe against Mr Naik is two-fold- the funding of IRF and speeches made by him to instigate communal disharmony and terror acts. We are ascertaining whether the funds IRF has received so far were used to commit terror activities. The videos which we confiscated too are being analysed by our officials and so far we have found that in some of his speeches, Mr Naik seems to crossing the line of legality,”a senior NIA official told DNA on Friday.The probe agency also said that efforts were being made to contact Naik and other trustees of IRF to join the probe. Naik currently is said to be in Thailand and it appears that the preacher might not plan to come back any time soon. In his statement, Naik said,”Now that they’ve banned me without asking me a single question, I have no choice left but to answer them only through the legal system and not personally. Their agenda is open and clear: implicate meby hook or by crook, which I will fight”. Attacking the current dispensation, Naik said that the ban on IRF and subsequent action against him happened under a “sinister agenda”. Calling the action against him as “communal”, Naik said the UAPA law was a draconian one, “The law does not seem to apply to the likes of Rajeshwar Singh, Yogi Adityanath and Sadhvi Prachi who continue to make inflammatory speeches aimed at inciting communal hatred for mere political mileage.”he said.

CBI arrest SP leader Amanmani Tripathi arrested in wife’s mysterious murder case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrested Samajwadi Party leader and an eastern Uttar Pradesh strongman Amanmani Tripathi in a case involving the mysterious death of his wife Sara Tripathi. Sara had died in a car crash on National Highway-2 when the couple were on their way to the National Capital last year. Amanmani had come out unscathed in the car accident prompting Sara’s mother t suspect the death, Sara’s mother, Seema Singh, had lodged an FIR against Amanmani and his family members, which included his parents, for murdering her daughter. Subsequently the case was taken over by CBI. The agency on Friday confirmed that Amanmani had been arrested and would be produced in front of a court to face murder charges.Tripathi’s father, former UP minister Amar Mani Tripathi, too is serving a life sentence for the murder of a Lucknow poetess, Madhumita, 12 years ago. Amanmani was also arrested in connection with another case of kidnapping lodged against him in Lucknow last year.According to officials , Sara had married Amanmani at an Arya Samaj temple in Aliganj area of Lucknow in July 2013.Her mother has alleged that Amarmani and his wife Madhumani, who are serving life terms for the murder of poetess Madhumita Shukla, were against the marriage. She has accused the couple of conspiring to kill Sara. Following the death of her daughter, Seema Singh had petitioned Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav seeking the transfer of investigation to CBI. After which the UP government had sent its recommendation to the Centre for a CBI inquiry into the case.The arrested accused was in news when Shivpal Yadav, during a feud with UP CM Akhilesh Yadav, announced the candidature of Amanmani from Nautanwa assembly constituency in Maharajganj. In October, Akhilesh in a statement had said that he had “no idea” about a new list of Samajwadi Party candidates for the crucial Uttar Pradesh assembly elections which included the name of Amanmani.

NIA to probe overseas IRF members as part of Dr Zakir Naik case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The National Investigation Agency (NIA) is all set to widen its probe against Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) and its founder Dr Zakir Naik by investigating members of the organisation both based in India and abroad. The development comes after NIA officially contacted banks asking them to freeze accounts of the banned IRF and Naik.According to a senior NIA official, the probe agency is currently preparing a list of individuals associated with the IRF who might offer more information about the funding of the organisation which was recently banned by the government of India. NIA is now looking to prepare a comprehensive list of IRF members specially those who are not based in India.“The funding of the proscribed organisation has to be explored further. IRF has received funds from abroad ever since its inception, and the NIA probe will focus on the money trail as well,” said the senior NIA official. The agency is also contemplating to get a red corner notice issued if Naik avoids refuses to join the investigation.The official further said that many IRF members and associates are based out of India, and in the coming few weeks NIA might contact the individuals asking them to join the investigation.Last week, NIA booked Naik and others under Section 18 of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) that relates to terror conspiracy, Section 10 and 13 of UAPA which deal with being member of an unlawful association and punishment for unlawful activities respectively, and Section 153A of IPC (inciting communal hatred).NIA had asked the home ministry to block websites and other online activities of the Islamic preacher and while speaking to DNA agency spokesperson Alok Mittal said that,”all action that needs to be taken against a proscribed organisation including banning its online activities is being taken”.A source in NIA said that some members of the investigating team probing Naik have been asked to examine audio and video files that were confiscated during raids on IRF premises.The recording , some of which are also available online, according to NIA, consist of speeches made by Naik in the past. The agency said it will be looking for portions of the speeches, where in Naik seems to be allegedly making inflammatory statements.During the search operations, video tapes and DVDs of Zakir Naik’s public speeches, documents related to property and investment, financial transactions, foreign and domestic funding of the proscribed IRF as well as its associated companies, and electronic storage devices have been recovered all of which will now be scrutinised.

NIA gives Zakir Naik two more worries: sister Nailah and IS link

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In what could only mean more trouble for Zakir Naik, the National Investigation agency (NIA) has claimed to have found a link between the Islamic televangelist and a person held for intending to join the Islamic State (IS) in 2015. The arrested individual, identified as Abu Anas, had claimed that he had received a scholarship from Naik’s organisation last year.This, however, is not the only new development in the NIA-led probe against Naik and Islamic Research Foundation (IRF), an organisation headed by the Islamic preacher and now banned by the government. According to NIA, five private companies, in which Naik’s sister Nailah Naushad Noorani is designated as director and additional director, too have come under the scanner after the agency found “connections” between the companies and IRF.”The investigation has revealed that the proscribed IRF has close connections with Harmony Media, Longlast Constructions, Right Property Solutions, Majestic Perfumes and Alpha Lubricants. Documents pertaining to inflow and outflow of foreign and domestic funding, which have been recovered during search operations, are being scrutinised,” NIA spokesperson Alok Mittal said on Tuesday.According to company records, Nailah is designated as additional director Longlast Constructions and Right Property Solutions with the appointment date set to March 12, 2013. She was appointed as director in Harmony Media the very next day. Furthermore, Nailah was appointed as director in Majestic Perfumes and Alpha Lubricants on May 22, 2015.While the private companies allegedly involved in suspected transactions with IRF may soon fall under the ambit of NIA probe, the revelation about Abu Anas, a software engineer and resident of Tonk, Rajasthan is no good news for the televangelist. Anas, 25, was arrested by the NIA in January 2016 for allegedly planning to go to Syria to fight along with IS.”The investigation has also revealed that Abu Anas had received Rs 80,000 from the proscribed IRF as scholarship in October 2015. Anas had planned to go to Syria to fight along with IS in the same period. He was arrested by the NIA in January 2016,” Mittal added.Agency sources told DNA that Anas had also taken a loan of Rs 2 lakh from a private bank with an intention to fly to Syria and this was after he was allegedly successful in sending two Indian recruits to Syria in early 2015.The two Hyderabad-based youth were identified as Arshad Ayub and Mohammed Kadeer.The agency on Tuesday said that it conducted search in one more premise of Naik, taking the number of raids conducted since last week to 20. “These premises are connected to the proscribed IRF and/or its trustees. During the search operations, video tapes and DVDs of Naik’s public speeches, documents related to property and investment, financial transactions, foreign and domestic funding of the proscribed IRF as well as its associated companies, and electronic storage devices have been recovered,” said Mittal.

CBI gets 34 requests to probe Indians wanted abroad

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In a recent move, the Centre has designated the CBI as the nodal agency to probe and prosecute Indians who have committed a crime in a foreign country, but cannot be extradited.So far, the CBI has received 34 requests from various countries to investigate Indian nationals who have been taking refuge in India after committing a crime abroad.Commenting on the move, a CBI official said, “The Centre has empowered and extended the jurisdiction of members of Delhi Special Police Establishment (CBI) under Section 5 of the DSPE Act to investigate and prosecute the offences as described under Section 4 of the IPC i.e. the offences committed outside the territorial jurisdiction of India referred to by the Central government from time to time.”So far, little action had been taken on the suspects accused of committing crimes abroad. They could not be extradited because of the limitation of bilateral treaties India has with countries where the crime has been committed.”There are many countries to which we do not extradite our own nationals to be tried because of the lack of treaties with these countries. And the same goes for countries which are in an extradition treaty with us. Due to this the prosecution of individuals is very difficult,” said the official.He added, “Making CBI the nodal agency is a good step to bring to task and prosecute such individuals.”Currently, India has extradition treaties with 39 countries, of which 21 bar extradition of their nationals who have committed a crime here. India too does not extradite its own nationals there. Some of the countries to which Indian nationals are not extradited include Germany, France, Bulgaria, Portugal, Poland and Saudi Arabia.In India too, so far, such suspects could not be investigated or tried, as the crime had been committed outside the jurisdiction of any of the Indian agencies including the Enforcement Directorate, the National Investigation Agency or state police forces.Asked as to the nature of the crimes these Indian nationals had been accused of, CBI sources said that out of the 34 requests they had received, the majority of the crimes included banking and fraud. However, some of the crimes were of a more grievous nature like murder, attempt to murder, criminal conspiracy, breach of trust, fraud, and cheating.”In most cases, it has been found that an Indian national has entered into a business transaction and offered payments through cheques which later bounced. But yes, some of the cases are more serious in nature,” a senior CBI official said.But while the CBI has been now given the licence to investigate these nationals, prosecution is still another matter. In order to prosecute such foreign citizens locally, the CBI will have to obtain sanction from the Ministry of Home Affairs under Section 188 of the Criminal Procedure Code, the official said.The official added that they can only be prosecuted here if the offence for which they have been charged is a cognisable offence in India too.

Syndicates working overnight to crack new Rs 2,000 note: Sources

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The coming few weeks, it seems, will be crucial for the Rs 2,000 note. Intelligence sources reveal that Bangladesh-based criminal syndicates manufacturing Fake Indian Currency Notes (FICN) are studying “features” of this new note to create counterfeit currency.According to a senior BSF official, a number of copies of Rs 2,000 rupee notes have been seized across the country in Bangladesh, but so far he claims such replicas are mere scanned copies. These are made out of paper instead of rag which is used to make original currency. The same material has to be used to create a high quality counterfeit.”The recently seized Rs 2,000 notes are mere copies which have been scanned to make it look like a currency note. It will take time for FICN gangs to regroup and we are hoping to counter any such attempts of counterfeiting,” the official told DNA. He, however, added that syndicates would soon ramp up efforts to create and circulate fake currency.So far though, security officials say they are pleased with initiatives introduced by the RBI which has made counterfeiting currency more difficult. In 2015, the RBI had introduced modifications to the now defunct Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 note that was especially difficult for FICN syndicates to crack.This year too, RBI modifications had sent FICN gangs operating in South Bengal, especially in Malda, into a tizzy. And now it remains to be seen how the recently issued Rs 2,000 note stands up against counterfeiting. In fact, security officials are already studying possible methods by which counterfeiters could look to copy and circulate fake currency.”There are 16 main features of an Indian currency note, four of which are invisible to the naked eye. Till 2014, the fake notes coming out of Bangladesh were increasing in quality. The 2015 modifications by RBI however marked an end to this and the result was that most notes seized by us were of 2014 make. Furthermore, more modifications introduced in the notes issued in January this year had made it more difficult for FICN to produce a good quality counterfeit,” said an intelligence official.The tough modifications introduced by the RBI, has ensured that security agencies so far are enjoying increased success in cracking down and seizing fake currency. According to government data, fake currency seized in South Bengal, including Malda, was a whopping Rs 1.7 crore in 2014, Rs 2.6 crore in 2015 and Rs 1.3 crore this year till October.”Most of the seizures made by the BSF or other probe agencies such as National Investigation Agency in 2015-16 were of 2014 make and most of seizures we made showed signs that the gangs were not able to crack the new modifications. The last big haul of the 2014 make fake currency was recovered on October 22 in Kaliachawk, (Malda district, West Bengal)” the official said.Officials also pointed out that the strict security measures introduced in the Rs 2,000 note ensures that copying and issuing such currency would require a huge network and major financial backing.”Indian currency is made out of pure rag which is only available with sovereign governments. To copy and circulate fake currency a vast international network would be required, which can only become possible with some state backing. For example, the security threads that exists in all our currency notes today can only be accessed by a sovereign government,” said a BSF official posted along the Indo-Bangladesh border.

War on terror funding started five months ago in Bangladesh

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It’s no secret that FICN (Fake Indian Currency Notes) are being used by Bangladesh-based terror groups to fund terrorist activities in India. But recently these groups have been feeling the heat. According to intelligence sources, an ongoing “war on terror funding” in Bangladesh, which began five months ago in July this year, has been yielding good results.Data from security agencies reveal that in July, FICN counterfeiters—operating on the India-Bangladesh border—would sell one lakh fake currency notes for 20,000-25,000 Indian rupees. Today, the self same counterfeiters sell the same one lakh fake currency for Rs 40,000. This suggests counterfeiters are bleeding their pockets dry, thus affecting terror and terrorism activities in both countries.Security officials confirm this to be the case. A senior NIA official explained to DNA just what danger the FICN networks had been posing to the country: “For years the FICN syndicates have been working in areas along the India-Bangladesh border, where they provided tacit support to terror groups. FICN is important to terror groups as it gives them the power to purchase weapons and a chance to hit the Indian economy where it hurts most.”One of the big reasons for success in stamping out FICN has been the increasing cooperation of the Bangladeshi authorities. Intelligence agencies point out that July 1 terror attack where terrorists opened fire at the Holy Artisan Bakery in Gulshan Park in Dhaka was the tipping point for Bangladeshi authorities. 24 people, including two police officers, were killed in the attack, believed to have been carried out by the terror group, the Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB).But Indian intelligence officials say it was not until the attack on an Eid congregation in Sholakia Eidgah, in Kishoreganj, Bangladesh, on July 7, that an extensive plan to counter terror activities was devised. A senior BSF official said: “Soon after the attacks in Bangladesh, counter terrorism and transitional crime (CTTC) unit, RAB (Rapid Action Battalion) and the Dhaka metropolitan police started offensive action against terrorists.The FICN network was clearly affected by the Bangladeshi offensive. On the July 1 attack, one lakh fake currency notes would cost anything between 20,000-25,000 Indian rupees.On July 27, SWAT, Rapid Action Battalion (Rab), Detective Branch of police (DB) and Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP) carried out a joint operation in Kalyanpur termed ‘Storm 26’. Nine suspected terrorists were killed, ensuring the FICN rates shifted up to Rs 28,000-30,000. The rates further raised in August and September when Bangladeshi authorities intensified their offensive and any party interested in purchasing would pay 35,000-38,000 rupees for one lakh FICN’s.”The operation in Azimpur, the killing of JMB chief Tamim Chowdhary and the killing of Zahidul Islam served as a crucial blow to the terror group and a marked dip was seen in the FICN business,” said a source. Islam was a retired major of Bangladesh Army and was allegedly the military trainer of JMB. While the group’s chief Tamim was gunned down on August 27, Islam was killed in the first week of September. Following the two killings, CTTC unit captured three suspected female militants during a raid in Dhaka’s Azimpur area.But while these measures have clearly affected the FICN syndicate officials warn that there is no room for complacency.”Due to these anti-terrorist operations, smugglers associated with terrorist groups went underground and supply of FICN decreased. As a result rates fluctuated to 35-38,000 per lakh (Indian rupees),” a BSF official said. He added, “Presently smuggling activity has decreased due to the non-availability of money. So while there may be a lull period now, we must be on our guard when the new currency hits the market freely.”

Demonetisation: NIA, BSF keep watch on fake currency rackets in border states

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Security agencies posted in border states, including the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and Border Security Force (BSF), have been told to keep a watchful eye on the activities of suspected racketeers smuggling fake Indian currency into the country. These racketeers are said to be using Bangladesh and Pakistan as their bases.Senior security officials told DNA that, so far, reports coming in from areas along the Indo-Pak and Indo-Bangladesh borders, following the demonetization measures, were “positive.” However, they add that there were intelligence inputs about the possible counterfeiting of the newly introduced Rs 2,000 note.The manufacturing of fake currency is mostly based in Pakistan. The Fake Indian Currency Note (FICN) network there has taken a hit following the demonetization announcement, and intelligence agencies believe individuals might attempt to counterfeit currency locally. However, they believe that this will not succeed.”The machines used to make the fake currency are highly sophisticated and can be owned only by sovereign governments as was found in our probes (between 2010 to 2016). The ones in India, if any left, are of sub-standard quality,” said an NIA official. So, only a small fraction of fake currencies are manufactured in India.While officials contend that it is too soon for syndicates in Pakistan and Bangladesh to try to replicate the Rs 2,000 note, one instance of an individual possessing a fake note has already been reported.Officials say that an individual was detained on Thursday in the Bhikhiwind area of Tarn Taran district in the Majha region of Punjab for allegedly possessing a fake note. The fake note with serial number 4CA 102501 and similar looking note, both of Rs 2,000 denomination, was confiscated and the man has been taken into questioning.”Even though there are no reports of any mass production of fake currency in India we are not taking any information on fake notes lightly,” a senior BSF official said. The official added that while the time being is considered as a “lull period” for the smuggling of FICN, the situation might change when the new denomination hits the markets freely.Intelligence officials told DNA that a close watch is being kept, especially in Punjab and the Malda area of West Bengal, through which 90 per cent of fake Indian currency is suspected to be entering India. The NIA has, in the past, investigated multiple syndicates operating in areas like Baishnabnagar, Mojompur, Kaliachak and Sujapur in West Bengal.According to a senior NIA official, at least four cases of FICN, one in 2012, two in 2015 and one in 2016, are being probed at the moment. “The arrests made in the subsequent probe into these four cases did serve a crucial blow to the FICN network in Malda. However, the syndicates are not completely weeded out from the region,” he said.

FICN network hit as agencies seize Rs 200 crore in fake notes

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Over the last six years, investigation agencies have seized close to 42 lakh fake currency notes worth about Rs 200 crore from different parts of the country, dealing a crucial blow to the FICN (Fake Indian Currency Note) network. Official sources say the strong efforts made by the Ministry of Home Affairs to fight the menace of counterfeiting currency since 2010 has borne fruit, as the number of fake currency notes seized has been falling from 2013.These numbers, they add, further dipped in 2014, and reached an all time low in 2015. These officials believe the reason for this is that the number of fake notes being produced by counterfeiters is falling. Government figures confirm this trend. In 2010, 54,962 notes were seized followed by 6,01,219 in 2011, and 9,27,789 in 2012. After that, the figures show a huge fall with 8,47,184 notes in 2013, 7,09,551 notes in 2014 and 4,66,657 notes in 2015 (till September). The battle to fight the menace of fake currency has been a long and interesting one for investigating agencies. However, investigating officials dealing with the international FICN syndicate say there was one instance which served as an eye opener.The instance goes back to May 14, 2009 when the Anti Terrorism Squad (ATS) of the Maharashtra police received information that two men, named Ravi Dhiren Ghosh and Nuruddin Islam were to meet and hand over counterfeit currency to their associates, identified as Mohamad Samad and Mohamad Aijul Shaikh near Star Cinema at Barrister Nath Pai Marg in Mazgaon, Mumbai. The ATS laid a trap and seized the notes from the four accused. But on examining them, they found that there was however something different about these fake notes. “The FICN were of very high quality and the denominations were in Rs 1000. This was crucial because in all cases before 2009 all the seized notes was hardly ever in such a high amount and these fake notes were top class forgeries. There were hardly any mistakes in them,” a senior ATS official told DNA. He added, “As soon as police realised this, the Central government was informed and the case was then handed over to the National Investigation Agency (NIA).” Soon after the seizure, a special FICN Co-ordination (FCORD) group was formed by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) to share intelligence amongst the different security agencies of both the state and Centre. This was done to counter the problem of circulation of Fake Currency Notes in the country. Then, a terror funding and fake currency cell in NIA was constituted to investigate Terror Funding and Fake Currency cases.A subsequent probe into the 2009 FICN Mumbai case however revealed more than the government was expecting. According to NIA documents, the notes were sent to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in Mumbai and Currency Note Press (CNP) in Nasik for expert opinion. The RBI analysis, according to NIA documents, suggested that, “many covert features of genuine Indian currency had been successfully imitated. These features can be achieved only through highly sophisticated machinery which is sold only to sovereign governments as revealed in the examination.” Investigating agencies pointed the finger of suspicion at Pakistan.Subsequently, security agencies began a nation-wide crackdown on the networks which according to the MHA, “originates in Pakistan and spreads through South and South East Asian Region for infusing FICN into India via. Nepal, Bangladesh, Thailand, Malaysia, Sri Lanka and the UAE.”

Demonetisation to affect funding of terror networks

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>With the total value of fake Indian currency, seized by authorities since 2010, valued at a whooping 198.25 crore rupees, investigating agencies and anti-terror bodies countering the notorious Fake Indian Currency Notes (FICN) network seem to be pleased by the demonetisation measures announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday.Speaking to DNA, senior officials of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and officers of the state police forces, said that taking out 500 and 1000 rupee notes out of circulation will have a lasting impact on the syndicates producing FICN’s, thus affecting the funding of terror networks in Jammu and Kashmir, North-eastern states and Naxalite hit states. According to official figures, more than 198 core rupees worth fake currency has been seized since 2010. In 2010, 24 crore FICN were seized followed by 27.09 crore in 2011, 45.24 crore in 2012, 42.90 crore in 2013, 36.11 crore in 2014 and 22.90 crore in 2015 (till September). A special FICN Co-ordination (FCORD) Group had been formed by the Ministry of Home Affairs to share intelligence among the different state and national security agencies to counter FICN networks.Officials told DNA that not only will the notorious FICN network bear the brunt of new economic measures various mechanisms employed by insurgent groups in various parts of India are bound to be effected. Among the mechanisms, according to the official, employed by insurgent and terror groups include Hawala transactions, extortion, ransom kidnapping and more importantly direct use of fake currency for illegal activities. “For syndicates benefiting directly in FICN, profits and rate of returns will decrease drastically. Most of the fake currency is being poured in to India by syndicates originating either in Bangladesh or in Pakistan and it will be very difficult to transport huge volumes of cash as the 500 and 1000 rupee note is taken out of circulation. Also the cost of producing huge volume of fake currency with the maximum denomination of 100 rupees will bleed these international syndicates,” said a senior NIA official.The official added, “Terror groups in Jammu and Kashmir use hawala transactions. Insurgent groups in North-east mostly rely on kidnapping and extortion and same goes for the Naxalites. The cash which would be lying with armed groups has been rendered useless. Furthermore, armed groups will find it very difficult to conduct business or buy arms and explosives using 100 rupee notes due to the logistical inconvenience.”Another senior NIA official while the detailing the history of counterfeiting currency said the menace of forging currency is a well planned effort. “Making fake currency has a long history which dates back to the World Wars. In India soon after partition, metal coins were being forged using crude equipment’s but that was for monetary gains of the individuals or syndicates involved. Soon the method was adopted as state policy to destabilise a nation,”said the official.The official said that the printing of currency in India is undertaken by Security Printing & Minting Corporation of India Limited (SPMCIL) and Bharatiya Reserve Bank Note Mudran Private Limited (BRBNMPL) which are both the subsidiaries of Reserve Bank of India. “Currency notes are prepared using a material called rag which is a cotton product. NIA compared fake currencies recovered in at least 35 criminal cases and quality and nature of the notes suggested they had the same source of origin. Be it notes recovered on Punjab border or J&K or Mumbai. The notes used by some transnational network even bore the same mistakes indicating they were being produced using similar machines,”said the official.Officials said the PH value found on FICN of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 denominations was exactly the same as the one found on Pakistani currency.

Leave your answer sheets blank: Vyapam officials

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) led probe of the Vyapam scam has revealed that government officials had directed students, appearing for forest guard recruitment examinations, to leave their answer sheets blank and had allegedly filled the spaces with correct answers themselves. According to officials of the probe agency, two officials of the Vyavsayik Pariksha Mandal or Vyapam, have been arrested in connection to this case. The two accused had allegedly helped 87 such aspirants appearing for the recruitment examination in 2013. The students also figure as accused in one of the 100 plus cases in the massive admission and recruitment scam that first hit headlines in 2013.The agency on Tuesday said that the two Vyapam officials were arrested on allegations of tampering with digital records pertaining to marks/result file of the Forest Guard Recruitment Examination in 2013. Nitin Mohindra , a principal systems analyst and CK Mishra, a former assistant programmer in Vyapam’s Bhopal office were also accused for more than 11 other cases. “Officials were brought in touch with the students through middlemen who then directed students to answer questions to which they knew the answers of. The answers that they did not know were told to leave as blank. The spaces were later filled by accused officials,” said an official of the CBI. The questions were in multiple choice format and were corrected digitally.According to officials the duo were arrested on Monday and presented before a court where they were sent to police custody till November 15. “It is alleged that the two accused were responsible for processing evaluation data of OMR answer sheets leading to publication of results in respect of FGRT-2013,” said Devpreet Singh, spokesperson CBI. According to CBI, in cases related to the Vyapam scam, the modus operandi included use of ‘scorers,’ a name given to an individual masquerading as a student supposed to appear for the entrance exams.

Police asked me why I married a terrorist’s sister: Brother-in-law of slain SIMI suspect

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Terming the October 31 police shootout of eight suspected members of Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) as a “criminal conspiracy”, the other of one of the deceased filed a complaint against senior cops and the Home Minister of Madhya Pradesh. Others related to the deceased undertials, however, continue to live in a state of fear and paranoia. DNA spoke to some of the family members and relatives of the SIMI suspects who made claims that could further cause discomfort to the state government which is already facing flak over the way the jail break case has been handled. Mohammad Feroz (28) is the brother-in -law of Amjad Khan, one of the eight killed in a police shootout on October 31. While speaking to DNA over the phone, Feroz claimed that on the day of the encounter he was blindfolded and picked up by police from his home in Khandwa, only to be let off 36 hours later. Feroz’s ‘release’, according to him, was made possible only after his family and neighbours pressurised the anti-terrorism squad officials posted in Khandwa. Feroz also claimed that he was the last one to have met Amjad one-and-a-half month ago in Bhopal Central Jail.”I got married to Amjad’s sister on September 25 this year. Before the ceremony, I had gone to jail to visit him (Amjad) to talk about how the ceremony preparations. He had wished me luck and told me to take care of his sister,” Feroz said. The 28-year-old works at a factory dealing with scrap material in Khandwa. According to him, on the day of the encounter he too was picked up by police early morning.”I was blindfolded and once in the jeep they told me to lie down on the floor of the car. They covered me with a blanket. Initially, I was scared to go along with them but my father told me to leave as the ATS would not heed to our requests. They drove me around for hours and took me close to Indore which must be about 150 kms from my home,”added Feroz.When asked if he knew the reason he was allegedly detained, Feroz said, “I didn’t know about the jailbreak at that time but they kept on asking me why I married Amjad’s sister. Why did I marry a terrorists’ sister. I am afraid something might happen to me as well,”said Feroz. He is not alone to fear what lies in the future for families and relatives of the deceased SIMI suspects.Jaleel Khilji, the younger son of Mohammad Aqeel Khilji, told DNA that he too does not feel safe after the encounter. “The encounter was fake. There are videos which show how the police staged the whole thing. I am not saying my father was guilty or innocent but if they did run away from prison police should have tried to arrest them. There were injury marks on father’s body and later we learnt that all of them were beaten up by using lathis,” he claimed.While the two youth are finding it difficult to handle the situation, for now Mahmooda Bi, mother of Khalid Muchale, in her complaint claimed that the “murder” of her son was a well “hatched up conspiracy” and thus demanded for registration of an FIR against Bhupendra Singh, Yogesh Chaudhary, IG Bhopal; Rishi Kumar Shukla, DG Madhya Pradesh; Arvind Saxena, SP Bhopal; Akhilesh Tomar, Superintendent of Central Prison Bhopal and Sanjeev Shami, Chief of ATS, Madhya Pradesh.”His killing was claimed as an “encounter” whereas it is neither possible nor feasible by any stretch of an imagination. There was no occasion or reason for my son to escape from the prison as the entire family, including him, were confident and assured about his innocence,” she wrote in her complaint. “It is clearly a cold-blooded murder which was well designed and executed in accordance and furtherance of their conspiracy”, she alleged.DNA has repeatedly tried to reach senior MP police officials for a comment however messages and phones calls made by the paper did not see a response.

Audio clips of control room suggest killings of SIMI suspects were ordered from above

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Madhya Pradesh Police officers, who were engaged in a shoot-out that killed eight suspected Students’ Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) members on Monday, after their escape from the Bhopal Central jail the same morning, seem to have been given the shoot-at-sight orders by the higher-ups of the police force.In two audio clips, which have the recorded conversation between the police control room and the MP police officers, clear messages that the men must be killed are heard. Conversations that senior police officers have ordered ‘the kill’ and are overlooking the operation from the police control room could also be heard.A senior police officer could be heard on the radio ordering his subordinates to kill all eight men (sabko nipta do). The order to allegedly kill the men comes before the police control room is informed that the men have fired upon the cops.In the clip, one person seems to be resistant to the idea of transporting the suspects to hospitals in ambulances. He argues that the authorities would end up spending money on the alleged SIMI members, in case anyone survives the shoot-out and is left with injuries only. Another person argues that the cops should spare at least one life. Even more interesting is how the voices in the clips are heard congratulating each other after killing the eight men and saying that “Bhopal has set an example”.The clips cast further doubts on the question of whether the accused men were armed at the time of the encounter as a person, believed to be a police officer, is heard saying that the escapees had fired upon the cops. Earlier, many contradictory versions came from various quarters of the MP government and the police.While the details on whether the men were armed or not gets murkier, the audio clips cleared several doubts on the encounter that have been raised in the past few days. Among the first is how the MP police claimed that the encounter lasted for an hour and was a result of a resistance by the SIMI suspects. The video clips, which are only 1.24 minutes and 9.22 seconds longer, suggest that the encounters lasted less than 10 minutes.The conversation starts with an individual laughing and saying: “There are five targets. They are running together. Another person responds: “Mike 12 and Sigma 113 go ahead, piche nahi hatna hai, jitni chargi hai unko bhi batao (Don’t retreat. Tell all police officers), surround them and finish off the job. The clips suggest that five of the eight men had been killed when they were spotted and the remaining three seem to have been running in a different direction but they too were shot dead.Another person is heard responding: Khel kardiya, ab ruk jao (The game is over, you can stop now), followed by expletives. The conversation reveals that the SP will also be going to the shoot-out site. Towards the end of the clips, a senior police officer is heard directing the police officers not to allow anyone near the encounter site in case another “farzi (fake) operation needs to be done”. The MP Police did not respond to DNA’s messages and phone calls.

‘Sabko nipta do’: Senior police official heard giving orders to kill 8 SIMI operatives on audio recording

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>In what could be the most revealing piece of information, with regards to the shootout of the eight suspected SIMI operatives, audio clips believed to be from Madhya Pradesh Police’s control room suggest that the cops had no intention of arresting the now deceased men, who had allegedly escaped Bhopal Central Jail on Monday morning. A senior police officer can be heard on the radio ordering his subordinates engaged in action to kill all eight men, ‘Sabko nipta do.’ It is imperative to mention that the order to allegedly kill the men comes before the police control room is informed that the men have fired upon the cops in action. The audio clip not only contradicts claims of the MP police that the alleged encounter lasted an hour, officials heard during the recording also seem to be resistant to the idea of calling ambulances to the encounter site. The argument for resisting calling ambulances is that authorities would have to spend money on the treatment of accused men in case anyone survives the shootout.Even more revealing portions come towards the end of the clips wherein a superior police official, while giving orders to his subordinates, directs them not to allow anyone near the encounter site in case another “farzi (fake) operation needs to be done”. In another part of the same conversation, a male voice is heard saying that the cops should at least leave one of the escapees alive. Interestingly, in the clips, the officials are heard saying that the suspects were returning fire even though the anti-terrorism unit of MP as well as the government said the opposite. DNA is in possession of two clips which seem to have been recorded conversations made through wireless sets. One recording lasts 1 minute 24 seconds and the second one for 9 minutes 22 seconds. The clips seem to have been recorded through a mobile phone by a person who is repeatedly heard using expletives for the men who were lodged in the Bhopal jail as undertrials suspected of being a part of banned SIMI and planning to carry terror attacks in the country. Here are excerpts from the conversation as transcribed by DNA:The conversation starts with an individual laughing: “There are 5 targets. They are running together.”A voice responds saying: “Mike 12 and Sigma 113 go ahead, piche nahi hatna hai, jitni chargi hai unko bhi batao, surround them and make sure that you get them gherke pura kardo kaam tamam.”A voice, suspected to be that of a senior official, is heard saying not to fire as there was firing from the suspects’ side. “One more party is coming, Chauhan sahab, Chauhan Sahab Chauhan Sahab yahaan se humari party aa rahi hai. They are firing, uska jawab diya jaye,” says the person in the audio.‘Sabko nipta do’ (Kill them all) a voice is heard ordering cops engaged in the shootout. A control room operator tells the police parties, ‘Mike 1, Saahab bol rahe hain nipta do (Sahab is saying to kill them all).”The conversation here seems to suggest that the order to kill the eight men came from above. Later on, in the clip, a male voice is heard saying that the “work of such (senior) officials who do their work from police control room should be appreciated”.Also, further on, a voice in the conversation is heard saying, “We are on our way, we are coming surround them (gherabandi). We are coming towards you. Aaj hi game karna hai (We have to kill them today).”Police officers can be heard saying that all the fugitives have been surrounded in a perimeter of 1 km of diameter by police parties.Someone is heard responding, “Khel kardiya, ab ruk jao (The game is over, you can stop now),” followed by expletives. The conversation reveals that the SP will be also going to the shootout site.Furthermore, the clips suggest that five of the eight men had been killed when they were spotted and the remaining three seem to have been running in a different direction but they too were shot dead.Towards the end of the clip a voice is heard congratulating his co-workers.”Badhai ho (Congratulations). All of the eight are dead. DSP Crime has confirmed the deaths.”This similar to the response that was given by the officials after they were informed that all five suspects surrounded had been shot dead, where a voice was heard saying “Shabash, koi nahi…”DNA is yet to verify the audio clip and will update the developing story with official police response.

SIMI encounter in Bhopal: Court documents contest police version

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As questions continue to be raised over the encounter between the Madhya Pradesh police and eight suspected Students’ Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) members, who had allegedly escaped from the Bhopal Central jail on Monday, court documents relating to at least two of the deceased highlight glaring contradictions in the police version.The Madhya Pradesh government, in the meantime, has decided to reward Rs 40 lakh to the cops involved in the encounter.According to the Madhya Pradesh police, the two men, identified as Mohammad Aqeel Khilji (s/o Mohammad Yusuf) and Amjad (s/o Ramzan Khan), were arrested under terror charges on June 13, 2011. At the time of the arrest, the police claimed that at 11.45 pm, they had raided Khilji’s house in the Gulmohar Park area and busted a meeting attended by alleged SIMI operatives. The police further claimed that Khilji, Amjad and the other suspects were planning terror strikes.However, court documents accessed by DNA tell a different story. In the form of affidavits, pleas, bail applications, and most importantly—a magisterial court order – all of them dating between June 6 and June 10, these documents clearly show that the accused were in the custody of the police before June 13.Furthermore, the families of Khilji and Amjad claim that they were arrested on June 6. They claim that they had moved applications in the Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) court on June 6 complaining that the police had detained their sons.Documents back up the families’ claims. DNA has access to a Court order acknowledging the bail applications by the families of the accused men. According to the order, the matter was heard in the court of CJM DS Chauhan on June 10, three days before the alleged meeting of SIMI operatives took place, as per the police’s claims. The CJM further posted the matter to be heard on June 13, while the police claimed that accused were arrested on the intervening nights of June 12 and June 13.In one of the applications on June 6, Amjad’s mother claimed that the police detained Amjad’s father Ramzan first, and she had then requested his release in exchange of Amjad. Another affidavit by Amjad’s father on June 10, which recorded the signature of Ramzan Khan, showed that he was in police custody at the time. The family’s applications cite Section 437 (when bail may be taken in case of a non-bailable offence) suggesting that it was not serious terror charges as claimed by the police.Defence lawyers representing the accused claimed that most of the undertrials had a good chance of being acquitted. For instance, Javaid Chauhan, who represented Khilji, said that two of the four cases against his client were cleared. Chauhan also claimed that the evidence gathered by the police against the SIMI suspects was weak.Tahawur Pathan, another advocate representing the accused, said: “All accused were booked under multiple sections of Unlawful Activities Prevention Act. The main evidence showcased by police was literature supporting SIMI, communalism or extremism.”Pathan added that the main charge was Section 153A (promoting enmity between different groups on grounds of religion, race, place of birth, residence, language, etc. and doing acts prejudicial to maintenance of harmony). Some of the accused were already acquitted of this offence.The Madhya Pradesh police refused to comment.

Guns or vessels? SIMI suspects shot

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The encounter of eight terror suspects belonging to the banned Students’ Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) created a political storm on Monday following contradictory statements from the Madhya Pradesh government and the police.The controversy began when the police — eight hours after the accused had allegedly escaped from the Bhopal Central Jail on Monday morning — claimed that the men were gunned down in an encounter in Malikheda on the outskirts of the city.The police claimed that the accused escaped from the jail after killing a security guard, Ramashankar Yadav, by slitting his throat. They added that the alleged terror suspects were encircled and killed when they tried to challenge the cops.Contradictions soon emerged between the police and the state government versions. In a statement, Inspector-General of Police Yogesh Chaudhary said: “We located the eight inmates, they fired on us, and all of them were killed in the cross-firing.”But Madhya Pradesh’s Home Minister Bhupendra Singh claimed that the men were unarmed. “The SIMI members used jail utensils as weapons. (They) didn’t have guns, but the police had no choice but to kill them,” said Singh in a television interview.Confusion further marred the day when a video was released on social media, in which a policeman is seen pumping bullets into a man from close range. In the same video, an unidentified person is seen taking out what appears to be a knife from the pocket of one of the deceased men, and places it back.Later in the day, Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan said that the jail-break would be probed by the National Investigation Agency (NIA). He added that the state government would conduct a separate probe.The undertrials were identified as Mohammad Aqeel Khilji (s/o Mohammad Yusuf), Mehboob Guddu (s/o Ismail of Khandwa) from MP, Mohammad Khalid Ahmad (s/o Mohammad Saleem of Sholapur) from Maharashtra, Mujeeb Sheikh (s/o Zamal Ahmad resident of Juhapura) from Ahmedabad, Amjad (s/o Ramzan Khan), Zakir Hussein Sheikh (s/o Badalul Hussein) and Abdul Majid (s/o Mohammad Yusuf of Ujjain) from MP.After the encounter, defence lawyers claimed that the accused had a good chance of acquittal as they had been cleared of several charges. Much of the evidence against the accused relied heavily on ‘literature’ that the police claimed was preaching violence. Lawyers contest this claim, saying they were Urdu literature and Quranic verses.According to Javaid Chauhan, who represented Mohammad Aqeel Khilji, two of the four charges against his client were cleared. According to Chauhan, Khilji’s son, Khalid, too was shot by MP’s Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) in 2013. Khalid, according to Chauhan, was wanted by the ATS and was with another accused in the Aurangabad area of Maharashtra. “While Khalid was shot in the kneecap, his associate was shot dead. Khalid is in Nasik jail at the moment,” said Chauhan.Tahawur Pathan, lawyer for Khalid Ahmed, too, claimed that the encounter came at a time when Ahmed had a great chance of being released. “The cases against Khalid were weak. The police have repeatedly claimed that the undertrials were SIMI members and jihadi literature was found at the time of their arrest. But these claims against Khalid were unfounded as he had a good chance of securing acquittal. I can understand if some other accused made an attempt to escape but why those who knew they had a chance of getting acquitted,” Pathan said.A retired police officer, who spoke on condition of anonymity, had a different take. “The jailbreak is surprising as SIMI suspects are under extra security cover. The accused would have to scale at least four walls to escape.”

Swedish national recruiting for ISIS in India

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A Swedish national has emerged as the main recruiter of Subahani Haja Moideen, a Tamil Nadu resident who was arrested by the National Investigation agency (NIA) on terror charges earlier this month. The 31-year-old was arrested in October this year, almost a year after he returned home from Mosul in Iraq, where he had been a part of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).According to intelligence sources, Moideen, during interrogation, said an ISIS fighter—who goes by the nom de guerre of Abu-Hafz-Al-Swedi—was his main contact person and helped him make the journey from India to Raqqa in Syria.Sources in the investigative agency said the NIA is likely to contact Swedish authorities to seek information on Swedi, as his name has cropped up for the first time during the course of their crackdown on alleged ISIS sympathisers in India. Officials said the NIA is ascertaining whether or not Swedi is in touch with other Indian nationals as well.Moideen, a resident of Tamil Nadu’s Tirunelveli, had left his home in 2015, after selling a piece of land he owned and boarded a flight from Chennai to Turkey. Swedi seems to have directed Moideen to meet some of his ISIS contacts in Istanbul and, after laying low in a safe house, the 31-year-old made his journey to Raqqa along with men who had come from other countries like Pakistan, Morocco and Russia.Swedi, whose real identity is yet to be ascertained, is the first ISIS recruiter to have actually met an Indian national fighting for the terror group, officials told DNA. “Moideen has claimed he was one of the rare Indian fighters to have actually met and worked with his recruiter directly. He claims that before him no other Indian working for ISIS actually met the person who brought him there,” said an official.According to a senior investigation officer, Moideen was introduced to Swedi in Tell Abyad, Syria, where he was given training in arms as well as lessons on Sharia enforcement. He then went through a two-week combat training session where he was injured. Subsequently, he was given the duty of a security guard, where he guarded tents of ISIS militants on a salary of $100 per month.”Moideen had received basic training in explosives manufacturing and operating an AK-47, but owing to his physical health he was taken off before his leader could send him to fight. He continued to work as a security guard and would collect his salary straight from an individual whom he identifies as Abu-Hafz-Al-Swedi,” the officer told DNA.He added that eventually Moideen had to flee to Mosul along with other ISIS terrorists. This was due to the outfit losing territory in battles waged in Raqqa, Syria.Moideen claimed that after he saw the brutalities perpetrated by ISIS in Mosul, he began asking his superiors to allow him to leave the group. Following this, he says that he was imprisoned in a jail managed by ISIS.With the help of some other detainees, Moideen managed to escape Mosul and travel to Turkey. In Istanbul, he contacted the Indian consulate and told them that he had lost his passport. Arrangements were made and he returned to India via Mumbai on September 22, 2015. He went to his ancestral place in Kadaynallur, Tirunelveli, where he was staying with his wife. Intelligence agencies say that he got in touch with his ISIS handlers again, following which he was arrested.

Now, Canadians complain of receiving credit card fraud calls from callers with Indian accent

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It seems that Americans might not be the only ones to be at the receiving end of the thriving business of credit card fraud emanating from India. After the Maharashtra Police unearthed a massive credit card fraud scam by raiding Thane-based call centres and arresting scores of individuals accused of duping close to 6,000 Americans, Canadian authorities have raised alarm about ‘suspicious phone callers with Indian accent.’According to the probe agency, scores of Canadian residents have complained to the authorities in their country about marketers and callers asking them about their personal information. The complainants have also stated that most of the callers have an ‘Indian accent’ and tend to be pushy while asking personal information which mostly is about credit card details.The revelation was made by some senior officials of the CBI who said that the issue was brought up during a recently held meeting with the Commissioner of Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Bob Paulson.”Several issues were discussed during the meeting and most of them focused on greater co-operation between Canadian and Indian investigating bodies. Some of the points discussed during the meeting were related to inquiries and judicial requests made by our agency in connection to criminal cases probed by CBI. While our Canadian counterpart assured better cooperation from their end, there were some issues raised by them in which they would be needing our assistance. One of them is of credit card fraud and the matter seems to be serious and urgent in nature,”a senior CBI official told DNA.”According to the RMCP in the last few months there have been multiple complaints from Canadian citizens claiming that they have been receiving calls from people with an Indian accent. The numbers from which they have been receiving these calls seem to be originating from two-three countries and we intend to work with out Canadian counterparts to probe this matter further,” the officer said.According to CBI officials, as seen in the past, syndicates operating a credit card scam system, are generally not based out of any one particular country. Similarly the numbers from which these fraud calls are made can be concealed using commonly available technology or through sim cards acquired illegally by syndicate members.Mumbai caseThane based call centres, which had more than 2,000 employees, have come under police investigation for allegedly duping Americans by pretending to be Internal Revenue Service officials and threatening them with tax investigations if they did not pay up. The police has also issued a Look Out Circular (LOC) to nab Sagar Dharmesh Thakkar, the alleged mastermind of the scam which is believed to have procured almost rupees 500 crore from American citizens

Retired air force officer, former Andhra MP booked by CBI in corruption case

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) have registered a case under Prevention of Corruption (PC) Act against a retired officer of the India Air Force and a former Member of Parliament who represented the Congress party in Andhra Pradesh. According to the probe agency the retired air force officials allegedly helped the former Parliamentarian to acquire agricultural land in south-west Delhi’s Najafgarh area which has recently seen a surge in land investments real estate development.The charges against the accused also include that the two men, with the help of a Delhi based bank manager, allegedly amassed wealth disproportionate to their known sources of income during 2007 to 2012. The total amount of money involved in the case is to the tune of approximately Rs12 crore.The Indian Air Force officer has been identified as Polu Sridhar, who retired as a Squadron leader. CBI sources said that the politician allegedly involved in the case is Balashowry Vallabhaneni who was a member of the 14th Lok Sabha of India and represented the Tenali constituency of Andhra Pradesh.The agency has also booked Manish Saxena who was the then branch manager of Axis Bank. The three have been booked under section 13(2) read with 13(1)(e) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988 and section 109 of the Indian Penal Code. The agency also conducted searches at three locations that include Guntur, Hyderabad and Noida.According to CBI sources, transactions worth Rs11.96 crore were made through Axis Bank’s Najafgarh branch between November 2007 to December 2012. “The transfers were allegedly made between Mr Polu Sridhar and Mr Balashowry Vallabhaneni in between the said period. Three suspected transactions that have come to fore are one running to the tune of Rs8.49 crores, Rs1.27 crore and more than two crores. The transactions include cash deposits as well,”said a CBI source.The source added that the transactions were made possible with the help of Saxena who has been accused of allegedly conniving with the senior air force official.According to officials, the accused will likely be questioned in the coming week. “We have already conducted searches at the premises belonging to those names in the case. Further action will depend on the direction which the probe against the accused takes,”said a CBI official.

CBI Director breaks silence on BK Bansal suicide

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Terming the alleged suicide of senior bureaucrat BK Bansal and his family as a “painful and unfortunate incident”, Anil Sinha, director of Central Bureau of Investigation, said that if agency officials are found guilty they will be brought to justice. Bansal, who was Corporate Affairs Director-General when CBI arrested him on bribery charges in July this year, in his suicide note, had accused agency officials of torturing him and his family.”This (suicide) is an extremely painful and unfortunate incident.I have personally initiated an internal inquiry into the allegations made by the deceased in the note believed to be written by him before his death,” said Anil Sinha adding that the probe agency wanted to get to the bottom of the case.”Our intention is to get to the bottom of the case and if any wrong doing is established on part of any of our officials they will be brought to justice,” the director while speaking at the sidelines of D P Kohli Memorial event which is organised annually by the CBI in honour of its founder Director, late D P Kohli.Another senior official told dna that the internal inquiry into the allegations made by Bansal “will conclude very soon”. “The Delhi police is probing the alleged suicide of Mr Bansal and three of his family members.Investigators from Delhi police had recently asked for some documents relating to the case of Mr Bansal and we provided the same. On our part, we are probing the allegations of harassment made against CBI officials and will soon conclude our internal probe,” the official said.On July 19, BK Bansal was arrested by the CBI on alleged charges of bribery and attempting to scuttle a probe against a Mumbai-based pharmaceutical company. The probe agency had also allegedly caught him accepting a bribe of Rs 9 lakh. Three days after Bansal’s arrest his wife Satyabala, 57, and daughter Neha, 27, committed suicide by hanging themselves. Bansal himself was granted bail in August however on September 27, bodies of BK Bansal and his son were found at their Madhu Vihar residence. In a note left behind and sent to some media house as well, Bansal said he had taken the extreme step due to the harassment and “torture” that his family witnessed at the hands of some officials of the CBI, as claimed in the suicide note.”The inquiry will be fair and conclusive,” said the CBI director at the annual event in National Capital. The event saw lectures delivered by Bob Paulson, the Chief of Royal Canadian Mounted Police , who emphasised on greater co-operation between Indian and Canadian law enforcement agencies.”We have nearly 392 investigation matters underway in over 66 countries and the International Component of investigations is expected to grow manifold in coming years. As the nodal agency for Transnational Organized Crime, Interpol, Anti-corruption and Bank Frauds, CBI has been alive to these unfolding challenges. We have recognized the need to enhance investigation capacity in all emerging areas of investigation and forging partnership with law enforcement agencies of major countries,” the director said.”Time has also come in India to enhance use of technology in trial processes and undertake comprehensive simplification of procedural laws to expedite the delivery of justice,” he added. According to senior CBI officials among the topics discussed between the Canadian and Indian officials were relating to 1984 anti-Sikh riots witness along with 13 extradition pleas from India. The agency has also sought co-operation from its Canadian counterparts to investigate Ottawa businessman Nazir Karigar who is accused arranging bribes to Air India officials in India in a failed bid to win a security contract from the airline.

?CBI books 40 people for Haryana violence

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Nearly 40 people have come under the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) scanner for their suspected role in the violence that rocked Haryana in February this year – otherwise known as the Jat agitation.The 40 people have been booked for conspiring to target Haryana’s Finance Minister Captain Abhimanyu at his residence. The probe agency took over the case from the police on the direction of the state government.On Thursday, the agency spokesperson said three cases have been registered in connection with the stir that was led by the Jat community to demand their inclusion in the Other Backward Class (OBC) category. Officials told DNA that of the three FIRs, two pertain to the arson and rioting that took place at Abhimanyu’s house. The third relates to allegations of looting of weapons from a company of Border Security Force (BSF) and Haryana police at Delhi bypass in Rohtak.”Allegations include attacking, looting of weapons from the police guard, attempting to murder the family members of the Finance Minister in the government of Haryana and burning down his house. The CBI took over the investigation on the request of the Haryana government and further orders from the government of India,” CBI spokesperson Devpreet Singh said.According to the Haryana police, most of the accused are absconding. A team of CBI sleuths has been camping in Haryana since last Friday. They have also recreated the scene of crime with the help of forensic experts. Sources said a number of witnesses have come forward to aid the probe into the massive agitation, which resulted in the death of 30 people and financial losses worth hundreds of crores.While, for now, the agency is focusing on three cases only, it is possible that the sleuths will probe incidents of violence that took place across Haryana, due to the possibility of common people being involved in the violence.The accused have been booked under sections 148 (rioting, armed with deadly weapon), 149 (unlawful assembly), 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 307 (attempt to murder), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant), 395 (punishment for dacoity), 427 (mischief causing damage to the amount of Rs50), 436 (mischief by fire or explosive substance with intent to destroy house), and 452 (house-trespass) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).The second FIR includes the same charges with an addition of sections 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) and section 120 B (punishment of criminal conspiracy).The third FIR, related to the looting of weapons from a BSF company, also has sections 283 (danger or obstruction in public way or line of navigation), 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to deter public servant from his duty), and 341 (punishment for wrongful restraint) of the IPC and section 8B of the National Highways Act, 1956 (punishment for mischief by injury to national highway).

Cops flee MP after ‘harassing’ RSS man

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It began like any other day. Anil Ajmeriya (30), sub-inspector at Madhya Pradesh’s Baihar police station in Balaghat district and father of a three-month-old girl, left for work as usual. In a few hours, however, everything was to change not only for him but for six others as well.The story took off on September 24 with an argument on WhatsApp group oninews1vavanchal, which has locals, journalists, political activists and cops as its members. Baihar resident Javaid and RSS local leader Suresh Yadav were involved in a verbal battle, in which, reportedly, Yadav made derogatory remarks against a particular community. A police complaint was filed against him the very next day.According to the police, Additional Superintendent of Police Rajesh Sharma summoned Yadav, who was then picked up by a team of police officers. On way to the police station, Yadav made a bid to escape. He allegedly ran into a pharmacy, owned by one Swami Asarti, near the police station. Cops claimed they had to use force to bring Yadav to the station, where he was put under arrest and subsequently released on bail.The story didn’t end there.An FIR against Yadav was registered around 9pm on September 25. At 4am the very next day, Yadav registered an FIR against the Addl SP, station house in-charge Zia-ul-Haq, Ajmeriya, an Assistant Sub-Inspector and three constables for allegedly beating him in police custody. Protests followed the news and a riot broke out in the area.Meanwhile during the day, the pharmacy owner also filed an FIR against the cops for trespassing on his property. In addition, two other FIRs were registered against unknown people, one for rioting and another for beating a constable. Among all these complaints, FIRs against the cops attracted more notice, forcing the police personnel to go into hiding.”I had to leave my family in a rush. I am scared,” said Ajmeriya, whose sister and father are also in the Madhya Pradesh police force. “We are not influential. We’re just trying to do our job. If the negative news and lies that are being spread about me reach my home in Morena, my family will be in trouble,” he said, adding that a false campaign has been started against the cops by political groups.”We have nowhere to go. We have tried to contact all senior officials but no one has come forward to help us,” said Ajmeriya nervously, while he repeatedly checked out his surroundings for a possible police party trailing him.Now two weeks after the incident, ironically, Ajmeriya, Haq and five other cops, including the additional SP of Balaghat, have become “fugitives” and “absconders” and accused, wanted by the MP police. On Tuesday, Ajmeriya and Haq travelled all the way to the National Capital Region (NCR) to seek legal advice.”Not even in my worst dreams had I ever imagined that I would be in hiding and running like a criminal,” Haq said. “We have not surrendered because back home, it will be seen as admission of guilt. We are officers of the law.If we are punished for performing our duty, what message will be sent to society?” he rued.In between, the cops tried to diffuse the tension by cracking a few jokes. “They have put charges of attempt to murder, rioting and looting on us. Davai bhi koi lootnay ki cheez hai?” said Haq, before adding, “My grandfather retired as a DSP before he went for Haj.”The duo did not reveal how they reached NCR but said that they have been staying with friends and well-wishers. They added they were not using the same number for fear of being tracked.”We will explore legal options, including anticipatory bail. I have arrested hundreds of people. If I’m put behind the bars with the criminals, I don’t know how will I survive,” Haq said.

Dadri lynching: Akhlaq’s younger son disturbed by accused being called ‘martyr’

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A year ago Mohammad Akhlaq’s family witnessed the brutal night of their lives when a mob barged into their house in Bisara village of Dadri and lynched him to death. In the attack Akhlaq’s family was not spared either. His mother, daughter were thrashed but Akhlaq’s younger son Danish Saifi was the one the mob left in a near-dead condition. Among the attackers was Ravi Sisodia, whose death in judicial custody due to suspected sickness brought Dadri lynching case into news again. On Friday, when Ravi was cremated amidst a hero’s farewell, the television visuals of Bisara villagers wrapping his coffin in a tri-colour and elevating him to the position of a ‘martyr’, forced the family to relive the night of horror yet again. Their only only regret, “how can our own people declare him a martyr when they know what he did”.”My family is distraught. I hope better sense prevails and we live to see the day when justice is served,” Akhlaq’s elder Sartaj Saif, an Indian Airforce corporal. An officer of the airforce, Sartaj seems to have learnt to keep his emotions under control while talking bout his father. The same cannot be said about his younger brother Danish, who was not only a victim and a witness to the violence that was unleashed onto Akhlaq’s family on the night of September 29.” When we heard the news of Ravi passing away, we didn’t know how to react. Our family had hopes that all those who killed my father will be served justice but if this what fate had kept in store for us then we will accept it. But one thing I can’t accept is terming him (Ravi) as a Shaheed (martyr),” said Danish.The 23-year-old was a civil services aspirant when the incident took place and till now garners the dream but is not able to study for more than 10-15 minutes due to the headaches. The pains, according to Danish’s family, have never subsided ever since he was twice operated twice due to injuries he had received in his head. As a result of the beating, Danish was left unconscious and spent quite a time in hospitals subsequently. Danish was not aware of his father’s death in fact was not told about it for months owing to the strain that the news would cause him. Once he was told about it the family protected him from any distressful aspects that kept on surfacing related to the probe into his fathers killing. Slowly however, Danish learnt to process what happened on the September night. However the Ravis death and the subsequent funeral procession has left his disturbed again.”It is a feeling I can’t explain. This man (Ravi) was carrying a stick and kept on hitting me and Papaji. He rained few blows on me and then on Papaji. He repeated this several times. I became unconscious only when another man hit me hard in the eye with the sewing machine kept in the house,” he said. “He was not a martyr,” added Danish.

Songeet Som, Mahesh Sharma try to pacify Bisara villagers, as speakers on same dais engage in hate speech

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A year after the lynching of Mohamad Akhlaq, aftershocks of the brutal murder caught up with senior leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Dadri’s Bisara village on Friday. Angry villagers resisted cremation of the body of Ravi Sisodia, an accused in the Dadri lynching case, who died in judicial custody this week.The village remained tense throughout the day with nearly 30 local leaders and political activists making hate speeches, even as BJP MP Mahesh Sharma and party leader Sangeet Som tried their best to defuse the situation.Villagers wrapped Ravi’s coffin in tri-colour and displayed it to more than 1,000 people who had turned up to join the protest to pressurise the Uttar Pradesh government to meet their five demands. The demands include Rs 1 crore compensation for Ravi’s family, a job and a flat for his wife Pooja, a CBI inquiry into the case, suspension of jail officials and arrest of Jan Mohamad, Akhlaq’s brother whom the villagers accused of slaughtering a calf as well. Late in the evening, after nearly three days of negotiations, the body was cremated. The situation in the village, according to local police, remained calm. A senior police official, on condition of anonymity, said that action will be taken against those spreading hate. However, an official present at the spot said the administration’s priority was maintaining peace in the village.Several people engaged in communal speeches and attacked the late Mohamad Akhlaq accusing him of slaughtering a cow. While some referred to him as a terrorist, others hailed Ravi as a martyr, a warrior, who had laid down his life for a noble cause. “Hindus never ate meat. It was Babur who spread this. Meat damages the human brain and warriors like Ravi are fighting for a cause,” said a speaker.Most of the residents of the village believe that Ravi was killed after suffering injuries he received in a fight with Muslim prisoners and because of the alleged police beating.The priestess of the local temple, Harisadhi Giri, spoke right before Mahesh Sharma and claimed that she had received a threatening call from Saudi Arabia to stop their fast which she and other women of the village started after Ravi’s death.”This is a country of saints and mahatmas. Saudi Arabia or any one else will not be able to do anything to this country,” said Mahesh Sharma to a roaring crowd. Sharma said Ravi died due to prevailing health conditions but his “killing” was due to negligence of UP government. “If authorities had taken care he would have been alive. Ravi has left us but 14 other kids are still living and suffering in jail daily,” Sharma said referring to the other 14 accused currently lodged in Kasna jail for allegedly murdering Akhlaq last year.After his speech, the MP met with village elders and Ravi’s family while other speakers continued to address the crowd. Among them was Bhupinder of the Hindu Raksha Dal, who called on uniting the Hindu community to fight growing influence of Muslims. “In jails, there are Muslim gangs and they offer Namaz in group. Even in jails our boys are not safe,” Bhupinder was heard saying.When Sangeet Som arrived, he went to the house where in Mahesh Sharma was holding his meeting and the duo arrived an hour later along with the SSP, district magistrate and sub-district magistrate of the area to discuss the demands. “UP administration has agreed to pay Rs 20 lakh. Rs five lakh will be paid by me and Mahesh Sharma ji. We are working on the other demands,” Som said.

Man who fought for IS in Iraq held: Here is Subahani Haja Moideen’s tryst with ISIS

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has put under arrest a resident of Tamil Nadu’s Tirunelveli district a year after he returned from northern Iraq’s –Mosul city. The Iraqi city has been occupied by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) for more than two years. The 31-year-old Subahani Haja Moideen is suspected to have fought for the dreaded terror group as a foreign fighter and his arrest is likely to serve a fresh insight into the lives of foreign fighters joining the ranks of ISIS.Moideen claimed that he returned from Mosul where he was being held as a prisoner in a jail managed by the ISIS after he had detracted from the group along with some other foreign fighters. While Moideen has claimed that he and other foreign fighters detracted from ISIS withstanding the “violence and war misery in Mosul”, the NIA has said that a year after laying low and working at a gold shop, the 31-year-old was planning to collect explosives at the behest of his handlers.Moideen, according to the NIA, was summoned to the branch office in Kochi for examination after a search at his native home in Kerala’s Idukki district. His name had cropped up in the investigation of a recently busted ISIS module. The agency officials however were taken aback when Moideen told them that he had gone to Iraq in April last year to join ISIS and fight for the organisation.As per the preliminary examination, he was radicalised and recruited to ISIS by recruiters active over online social media platforms. He left India for Istanbul from on a visit visa. After reaching Istanbul, he crossed over along with others including people from Pakistan and Afghanistan to ISIS held territory in Iraq,” said NIA spokesperson Alok Mittal.According to agency investigators, Moideen told them that he was then taken to Mosul in Iraq, where he underwent detailed course in Shariya followed by combat training. “Moideen was sent to to the war zone in Mosul for security duties in ISIS held territory, which he performed for almost two-weeks,” the spokesperson said adding that the job assignment was given to him after his completion of combat training including training in the automated weapons.”He was being paid USD 100 per month as subsistence allowance by the ISIS along with common available accommodation and food without any additional charges,” said NIA.Imprisoned by ISISOn conveying his decision to quit the organisation, he was imprisoned by ISIS at Mosul and was subjected to extreme torture. He along with other similar deserting foreign fighters, was produced before a judge of the ISIS, following which he was again incarcerated at Raqqa in Syria. Later, for reasons yet to be ascertained, he was allowed to leave ISIS controlled territory and return to Turkey along with five other foreign nationals where he stayed illegally in Istanbul for about two weeks, before approaching the Indian Consulate, for returning to India. Sources said that Moideen had told the consulate that he had lost his passport.The agency believes that Moideen’s family sent him money for flight tickets to India after he contacted them and conveyed his decision to return home . The NIA said that Turkish Police issued a clearance certificate to Moideen followed an Emergency Certificate issued by Indian Consulate. He returned to India through Mumbai on 22nd September, 2015 and went to his ancestral place in Kadaynallur, Tirunelveli, where he was staying with his wife.”He got a job as a salesman in a gold jewelry shop at Kadayanallur. However, once back and settled, he again got in touch with ISIS handlers over internet and was planning to collect explosives and precursor chemicals from Sivakasi at their instance. He had travelled to Chennai, Coimbatore and other places to meet other local contacts in the conspiracy, collect money and procure explosives / precursor chemicals, for terrorist acts, as guided and motivated by the ISIS handlers,”the NIA said.

Is Bihar’s Munger becoming a hub for illegal arms trafficking and international terrorism?

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>On Tuesday the Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime chief of Bangladesh, Monirul Islam , reportedly said that modification of arms used to carry out the July Dhaka terror attack was done in Munger city in Indian state of Bihar. The statement has yet again put Munger on radar of Indian based security agencies and police forces who were, just days before the Dhaka terror attack, in talks to set up a joint task force to counter illegal arms traffickers who were using Munger as a base to modify weapons.A week before terrorists struck Holey Artisan Bakery in Dhaka’s Gulshan Thana, National Investigation agency (NIA) had received inputs about illegal arms traffickers using Bihar’s Munger area as a base to modify and assemble weapons before shipping the same to Maoists operating in Jharkhand.dna on June 22 had reported that cadres of CPI (Maoist) operating in Jharkhand have been supplied with sophisticated M-16 rifles. The anti-terrorism squads (ATS) and special task forces (STF) from almost half-a-dozen states had been called for a meeting with NIA’s top brass regarding the same issue.The probe agency, in the last week of June, initiated talks with ATS and STF of Nagaland, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand to chalk out a strategy from stopping the highly-sophisticated weaponry from reaching cadres of CPI (Maoist) operating in Jharkhand. On July 1, however, five terrorists suspected to have owed allegiance to Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), carried out the attack in which 24 people were killed including two police officers. Authorities in Dhaka however believe that consignment of AK22 rifles and some small arms reached the militants in the Bangladesh capital a month before the terror attack.”A seal from a factory in Bihar was found on the three AK22 rifles recovered after the Gulshan terror attack,” Islam was quoted as saying by the Dhaka Tribune. Of these arms, three AK22 rifles were used in the attack while another rifle was used for the security of Neo Jama’atul Mujahideen Bangladesh chief Tamim Ahmed Chowdhury, the paper said.With Jama’atul Mujahideen suspected to have connections in India as well, and in light of latest revelations about Munger agencies in India are likely to see illegal arms trafficking as part of a international terror network”We have come to know that the modification of these arms was done in Munger city in Bihar state of India and then they came to Chapainwabganj border,” Monirul Islam was quoted.Official sources in NIA had told dna that Munger in Bihar has been somewhat becoming an important transit point owing to its existing illegal arms markets. Munger is also home to several freelancers known for servicing and repair of sophisticated weapons such as M-16’s.According to officials, NIA sleuths probing arms smuggling in north-eastern states,have also managed to identified individuals allegedly involved in the smuggling of M-16’s. The individuals, are likely part of a single syndicate and belong to Punjab, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Nagaland. In June sources had further told dna that investigators had come across transactions of 30-40 lakh rupees made into accounts of certain individuals who were already in radar for their alleged illegal activities.

Accountant, designer, engineering aspirant among youth arrested for ISIS links

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>An engineering aspirant, an accountant, a designer with a daily newspaper and a hospitality personnel are among those arrested on terror charges from Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Preliminary probe of the six youth arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) on charges of plotting terror attacks have led the probe agency to some new aspects of the modus operandi followed by individuals aspiring to be a part of the dreaded Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) outfit.According to officials, the youth, who come from a financially secured and educated background, were allegedly part of a fresh “ISIS inspired” module. These newly recruited people were motivated to be part of the terror outfit without guidance from a handler or mentor as was seen the case in over 40 youth, that have been arrested by the NIA this year.The revelation about the fresh ISIS inspired module further removes initial speculations that the latest batch of arrested youth might be connected to the missing residents of Kerala believed to be in Afghanistan.According to senior officials of the NIA, preliminary examination and surveillance of the arrested youth did not suggest any connection between them and the missing 21 residents of Kerala. Official sources on Monday gave dna a brief profile of the accused men. The accused have been identified as Manseed (30), Abu Basheer (29), Swalih Mohamad (26), Safwan (30), Jasim (25) and Ramshad Nageelan Kandiyil (24). Sources said that among the arrested youth, 25-year-old Jasim was pursuing a course in Associate Member of Institution of Engineers. Swalih Mohamad, who has been given the alias of Abu Hasna, worked in Mahindra Holidays & Resorts India Ltd and Safwan works as a designer in a Kerala based newspaper.Officials added that while Manseed alias Omar al Hindi worked in Qatar, Abu Basheer alias Rasheed was a mechanic in Coimbatore. Agencies believe that Rashed might have been chosen as the Ameer or leader of the module. Ramshad, the youngest in the group, was working as an accountant in a shop and helped out with the accounts of a local mosque, dna has learnt. Jasim and Ramshad, according to a senior NIA official, are cousins as well. “Credible information was received that some youth from Kerala and Tamil Nadu along with their accomplices have entered into a criminal conspiracy to commit terrorist acts by collecting explosives and other offensive material for targeting important persons and places of public importance in various parts of south lndia,” NIA spokesperson Alok Mittal had said on Sunday adding that the information was passed on to the Central government which directed the agency to investigate the case.“Acting on the information, the NIA teams along with Kerala Police, Delhi Police and Telangana Police, launched surveillance on the movements of the accused involved in the conspiracy. During searches conducted on Sunday in the districts of Kozikhode and Kannur in Kerala, six persons, have been arrested for their involvement in the conspiracy. Five of them were arrested while they were conducting a meeting at Kanakamala hilltop, Kannur district, Kerala. During subsequent searches, another person was detained from Kuttiyadi in Kozhikode district and arrested later on,” said NIA officials.While Abu Basheer hails from Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu, the rest of the youth belong to Kozhikode, Kannur, Mallapuram and Thrissur in Kerala. According to the NIA the accused were allegedly collecting explosives to target important persons and places of public importance.No connection with 21 missing residentsAccording to senior officials of the NIA, preliminary examination and surveillance of the arrested youth did not suggest any connection between them and the missing 21 residents of Kerala. Official sources on Monday gave dna a brief profile of the accused men. The accused have been identified as Manseed (30), Abu Basheer (29), Swalih Mohamad (26), Safwan (30), Jasim(25) and Ramshad Nageelan Kandiyil (24). Sources said that among the arrested youth, 25-year-old Jasim was pursuing a course in Associate Member of Institution of Engineers. Swalih Mohamad, who has been given the alias of Abu Hasna, worked in Mahindra Holidays & Resorts India Ltd and Safwan works as a designer in a Kerala based newspaper.

CBI inquiry to only focus on harassment allegations, not BK Bansal’s suicide

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The ongoing internal inquiry initiated by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) against its officials in connection to the suicide of former Corporate Affairs Director-General BK Bansal will only focus on the allegations of harassment leveled by the deceased bureaucrat in his seven-page suicide letter. dna has learnt that investigators of the probe agency are likely to stay clear of the alleged suicide and instead focus on the harassment allegation alone, leaving Delhi Police as the only authority to crack the case. While the mandate to probe the alleged suicide does lie with the Delhi Police, it is imperative to mention that if found guilty in the internal inquiry, the erring officials are only likely to be taken to task for the alleged harassment they meted out to Bansal and his family.”It is the mandate of Delhi Police to probe the alleged suicide. On our part, we will be probing if the allegations of harassment, as leveled by the deceased in a suicide note purportedly written by him, are correct. If so, appropriate action will be taken against officials named by the deceased,” said a senior CBI official. It is imperative to mention that a first information report is yet to be filed in the case almost a week after the incident took place. Instead police have started inquest proceedings into the alleged suicide case where police generally book accused persons abatement to suicide — Section 306 of Indian Penal Code. In cases where a suicide note accusing an individual or individuals is found from the scene of crime police can book the accused under Dying Declaration-Section 32(1) of the Indian Evidence Act. Senior Delhi police officials overlooking the case did not receive calls or respond to text messages sent by dna to inquire about the status of the proceedings on Sunday evening.Bansal, who was from Indian Corporate Law Service (ICLS) and was arrested by the CBI on the charge of receiving Rs 9 lakh bribes for extending favours to a Mumbai-based firm on July 16, merely three months before he was due for retirement.Bansal and his son, Yogesh were found hanging from ceiling fans by their maid last week. The incident comes only two months after Bansal’s wife Satyabala, 57, and daughter Neha, 27, committed suicide by hanging themselves on July 19, three days after his arrest. Bansal himself was granted bail in August but allegedly took the extreme step last week owing to harassment and “torture” that his family witnessed at the hands of some officials of the CBI, as claimed in the suicide note.What does the suicide note say about CBI officials?”I am committing suicide because of the torture by the CBI. On the night of July 18 and in the morning of July 19, CBI lady officers Ms Rekha Sangwan and Ms Amrita Kaur badly tortured my wife and daughter. My wife had narrated about it to her friends and neighbours before committing suicide. They slapped my wife several times, dug their nails into her and abused her. DIG Sanjeev Gautam also told them to torture,” said the suicide note allegedly written by Bansal. It adds, “In front of me, DIG Sanjeev Gautam told a lady officer in the afternoon of July 18 to torture so much that mother and daughter become as good as dead. I pleaded with the DIG but he said his name would send shivers down to my next generation, they will remember the CBI. He himself ordered the two lady officers in front of me to commit death-like torture. He is as much responsible as the two lady officers, Ms Rekha Sangwan and Amrita Kaur. Besides them, one fat constable also misbehaved with my wife and tortured her and mouthed nasty abuses at my wife and daughter. If it was my mistake, then why were my wife and daughter tortured and made to commit suicide?”This was simply a murder of two women and it cannot be called suicide. DIG Sanjeev Gautam, the two lady officers and the fat constable should undergo a lie-detector test and the exact truth will come out. DIG had said ‘I am Amit Shah’s man. Who can touch me?’ He said he would make the condition of my wife and daughter such that those who will hear about it will tremble,” the letter stated

How the Uri attack unfolded

<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>After the deadly suicide attack that killed Indian Army soldiers in Uri on Sunday, security agencies are conducting a thorough probe as to how the militants were able to get through. While the stock taking is continuing some initial details of the investigation have come out.The army camp is surrounded by the Pir Panjal mountain range on three sides and behind the peaks is the Line of Control which divides J&K. Security officials maintain that the militants used the route closest to the army camp which passes through Sukhdar village that lies at a distance of four kilometers from the camp. It is around this area that the security agencies believe that the suicide bombers had rested before attacking the camp.Speaking to dna, sources privy to the probe’s findings said, “There are a couple of possibilities as to when the group entered into Indian side of the LoC. If an insider was accompanying them, then the group might have entered on Saturday itself or Sunday. Investigators have not recovered any spare clothes till now so the group was dressed in army fatigues.”Sources also contend that around 5.30 on Sunday morning, after breaking into two groups and breaching the camp in two places, the second group then divided into three. Two of them proceeded towards the barracks, one of them advanced towards the officer’s mess and the third towards the administration block of the base camp. It was at the barracks when the group of two noticed diesel barrels that store the fuel for the generator set located near-by.”We suspect that the plan was to first fire indiscriminately and hurl grenades at the most vulnerable spots within the camp. However seeing the diesel the terrorists began hurling 12-15 grenades at the fuel and within minutes three barracks perished along with the personnel inside.”Investigators also believe that a guide, most likely from Uri, had accompanied the terrorists till the army camp was in their plain sight. If no involvement of an insider is found it only shows a dangerous trend which is that terrorists can strike purely depending on GPS sets which provide a detailed recce provided to them before they leave Pakistan, officials said. “From Uri to Pathankot, the terrorists are trying to establish a perimeter and telling us that they can strike anywhere.”

NIA recovers weapons, explosives, chemicals during raids of terror modules with alleged ISIS links

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) detained 11 people in Hyderabad and claimed to have busted a terror module with alleged connections to the dreaded Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) on Wednesday morning. Official sources told dna that the agency had recovered weapons and chemicals used to produce two improvised explosive devices from during raids conducted by the agency at 10 locations in Hyderabad. Agency officials also told dna that Rs 15 lakh were recovered by investigators from the residence of one of the detained individuals. All the detained individuals are in their late twenties and early thirties. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>According to agency officials, an FIR was registered against five of the detained individuals on June 22 after evidence against them emerged during the course of an ongoing investigation of suspected ISIS sympathisers in India. The five detained individuals were identified as Mohamad Ilyas Yazdani (24), Ibrahim Yazdani (30), Habib Mohamad (32), Mohamad Irfan (27) and Abdullah Bin Ahmed (31). The detained men are from Amaan Nagar, Chatta Bazaar and Charminar localities of Hyderabad. A senior NIA official said that the detained individuals were in the process of evolving into a larger group with an intent to perpetrate anti-national activities and violence using improvised explosive device. NIA further said that the detained individuals were in touch with a handler based out of areas controlled by ISIS in the Middle East but added that it was yet to be ascertained that the main contact person of the sleeper cell was Shafi Armar who is believed to be in touch with the ISIS module that was busted earlier this year.According to agency officials, raids were conducted following a tip off about the suspicious activities of the ‘terror module’. “NIA with the help of local Police has conducted searches at 10 locations in Hyderabad city today morning. The searches are still going on,” said SK Singh, IG, NIA. He added “Weapons, explosives material, cash have been recovered so far along with several electronic devices that include laptops, SIM cards, tablets and pen drives. The recovered material will be sent for examination.” The official, while speaking on the nature of weapons and explosives material allegedly recovered from the detained individuals, said that the suspects had acquired chemicals used to create explosive devices. The agency claimed to have recovered two 9mm pistols, air guns, targets used for shooting practice and nails used for the purpose of making IED. According to agency officials, the detained are currently being questioned and further action will be taken accordingly. The agency said initially it had received information on five individuals thus the FIR was registered against them.If investigators are convinced that the other six detained on Wednesday morning also are part of the ISIS module, they will be placed under arrested along with those names in FIR.

dna exclusive: Pampore terror replay in 2 days?

Intelligence agencies and security forces in Kashmir valley are currently fighting a battle against time after emergence of a conversation between two Lashkar-e-Taiba militants, finalising details of an “imminent” Pampore style attack that is to take place in the next two days.The speakers in the conversation, analysed by state and national level intelligence, allude to Pampore attack as a “job well done” and go on to detail how another spectacular attack must take place soon while taking care of the civilian population.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The conversation is suspected to have originated from Lashkar’s ‘control station’ in South Kashmir’s Shopian town and is quite an important one owing to fact that security agencies will already be on their toes during the annual Amarnath Yatra, which starts on July 7.Senior intelligence officials told dna that agents on ground are trying their level best to avert the attack and at the same time being cautious enough not to be misled in case the conversation between the LeT militants is a ploy to divert attention from their real target. According to official sources, the attack is likely to be perpetrated in Srinagar city or anywhere between Pantha Chowk and Sangam in South Kashmir.The intercept, accessed exclusively by dna, is apparently between a senior Lashkar commander and his contact (referred to as Yaseer) where in the latter was asked to take care of two other LeT fighters and dispatch the duo to carry out the next attack in a day or two. The commander, in all probability being Abu Dujana, is telling his contact to make food arrangements for the two militants and instructs him that collateral damage to civilian population must not take place.The Laskhar commander is allegedly heard saying, “The job which our brothers did yesterday was a good one. There are two others. Make food arrangements for them. We have to do this job in two days’ time. We do whatever job given to us from the higher-ups and you should do the work given to you and do it well.”The Laskhar commander further tells his contact, who is suspected to be an underground worker (OGW), that the two LeT fighters should ensure that no harm comes to civilians. “While working, take care of your surroundings (dahinay bahinay). Keep in touch and take care of of civilian public,” the commander is quoted in the documents accessed by dna. Earlier too, Burhan Wani Hizbul Mujahideen’s 22-year-old chief in a video message released online had said his group would not target Hindu pilgrims going to Kashmir for the Amarnath Yatra. The security agencies, however, are not taking any chances.Earlier in the conversation, the commander seems to be complaining about the wireless sets as well as some militants who switch off their device thus disrupting contact between LeT fighters.Following the interception of the conversation, security in the areas has been further tightened. Agencies, which already suspect that Dujana might be behind the Pampore attack that claimed lives of eight CRPF personnel, now find themselves in a tough spot. In the past as well, Dujana’s name has cropped up in multiple cases of attacks on security personnel, the most prominent being 2015 Udhampur attack, which claimed lives of two BSF personnel.Believed to be a resident of Gilgit-Baltistan in PoK, Dujana operates mostly in South Kashmir, but was appointed as the new Lashkar chief after Abu Qasim was killed in a police action in last December.

Hotels in Madhya Pradesh and their connection to Vyapam scam

The Central Bureau of Investigation is likely to question private individuals who either own hotels or have homes in Madhya Pradesh’s Gwalior area in connection to the infamous Vyapam scam. The scam involves several senior politicians, businessmen and officials of the Madhya Pradesh government. According to official sources, properties of these individuals were used by Vyapam middlemen to provide temporary accommodation to fake candidates or impersonators hired for appearing in the entrance examination in place of the original candidates.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A CBI official privy to the investigation into the massive education and recruitment fraud said, “If investigators discover evidence which proves connivance on part of these private persons, action will be taken as per law.” The agency is also looking to develop information which is where questioning of the individuals can prove useful.Sources told dna that the development came after CBI registered four chargesheets against accused persons operating in Gwalior and neighbouring Morena areas which feature heavily in the scam, which has seen arrest of over 2000 persons.While many from Morena were booked for their role in Vyapam recruitment scam, what made it important is that five of the total number of mysterious deaths of witnesses and accused in the scam are from this area alone, including that of prime accused Narendra Singh Tomar. Even more bewildering is the fact that twelve other deaths that have taken place in Gwalior, 60 kms from Morena. The agency is now looking to explore the involvement of civilians in Gwalior and Morena.Sharing its borders with both Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, it was from these parts of the state that middlemen in the Vyapam scam would travel to their neighbouring states to commission ‘scorers’ – the persons who would sit in the entrance in place of the original candidate. The scorers would then be housed in either hotels or homes of private people and would be taken to the exam centre by the middlemen, a CBI official told dna.In fact the uncovering of the entire Vyapam Scam took place in a Indore hotel on July 7, 2013. On that day, the Indore police raided Hotel Pathik, where one of the guest was a student. He identified himself as Rishikesh Tyagi a resident of Bhind, Madhya Pradesh, and provided the police with an identity card. According to documents related to probe accessed by dna suggest that police were already aware that the student was in fact a scorer.When an official asked the student his father’s name as written in the i-card, he wasn’t able to provide an answer. Upon confrontation, the student admitted that he was Ramashankar, a resident of Gonad in Uttar Pradesh.”Investigators are still looking if private individuals in Gwalior or Morena knew that the persons staying in their premises were middlemen and scorers, ” a CBI official added. The private homes or a room in a house would be rented out to these middlemen for a week or so in exchange of a rent.

Showdown between Kejriwal and BJP as another AAP MLA arrested

Confrontation between the BJP-ruled Centre and Delhi government took yet another dramatic turn on Saturday with the arrest of Aam Aadmi Party legislator Dinesh Mohaniya who was on Saturday afternoon whisked away by the police while addressing scores of media persons at a press conference. He was arrested for alleged criminal intimidation and sexual harassment.The development led to a showdown between leader of AAP and BJP with Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal even going ahead and accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of “declaring emergency”. With Mohaniya becoming the eight MLA to be arrested by Delhi police so far, AAP leadership accused the Modi government of hunting down its legislators.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Mohaniya, an MLA from south Delhi’s Sangam Vihar constituency, was addressing a press conference when a team Delhi police officials pulled him out of his chair in full view of news crews and journalists. The MLA, while being whisked away said, “You can see how the police is dragging me like a hooligan in front of your eyes”.The decision to arrest Mohaniya was taken after he allegedly refused to join the investigation of a complaint lodged against him despite being served a notice asking him to do so on Friday, police claimed. Mohaniya, who is also the vice-chairman of Delhi Jal Board, was booked on June 23 after locals of Sangam Vihar alleged that the MLA and his supporters roughed them up and misbehaved with women in his office when they went to complain about irregular water supply.In their written complaint to the police, the residents of Sangam Vihar alleged the women of their locality were roughed up and expletives used against them when they had gone to see Mohaniya in his office. They further accused Mohanya of threatening to break their bones following which he forced them to leave his office.The complainants recorded their statements before a metropolitan magistrate on Friday on the basis of which police registered a case against Mohaniya under Section 506 (criminal intimidation), Section 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) and Section 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt) of the Indian Penal Code at the Neb Sarai police station.While Mohaniya attempted to hold a press conference to discuss the case details with media, he was picked up by police, taken to Neb Sarai police station and produced in front of a magistrate who sent him on a three-day judicial custody.”Mohaniya has been arrested under Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 506 (criminal intimidation), 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman), 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 354 A (sexual harassment), 354 B (assault or use of criminal force to woman with intent to disrobe) and 354 C (voyeurism),” joint commissioner of police (South East) RP Upadhyay said.As soon as visuals of Mohaniya being led away by police were broadcast, AAP leadership upped the ante against the BJP-ruled Centre.”Modi declares emergency in Delhi. Arresting, raiding, terrorizing, filing false cases against all those whom Delhi elected” Arvind Kejriwal tweeted. “Dinesh mohaniya arrested from his press conference in front of all TV cameras. What msg does Modi want to give to everyone? (Sic.)” he said in another tweet.Trouble of Mohaniya, however, did not end with his arrest. A second FIR was registered against him after a man accused him of slapping him in south-east Delhi’s Govindpuri on Friday. A case was registered under Sections 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 341 (wrongful restraint) of the Indian Penal Code.The incident allegedly took place while Mohaniya was on a visit to Govindpuri around 2pm on Friday, said a senior police officer.

Parents of deceased minor accuse police of cremating body without consent

Parents of a 13-year-old girl, who was found dead in her home in South-west Delhi’s Inderpuri area, accused local police of not only subverting the case but also cremating the body of the victim against the will of the aggrieved family. While the police suspected the death to be a case of suicide, parents of the minor alleged she was raped and murder by their landlord’s son. Police have so far denied their officials did a forced cremation of the minor and have also overruled possibility of sexual assault or foul play.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The incident was reported to the police early on Friday morning when the girl was found dead in her house in Inderpuri. According to the family, a team of officials took the minors body and conducted a post mortem in a local hospital. Investigators later informed the parents that minors death was a case of suicide.However the mother said that she had been demanding from the police to repeat the post-mortem as she was not satisfied with the result as soon as it was conveyed to her.According to the mother, police responded by putting the body of the minor in a jeep along with the father of the victim and drove to a cremation ground early on Friday.When the mother wanted to know where they were being taken, she was informed by the police that they were taking the father and the deceased back to her house in Inderpuri. However this, according to her, was not the case.The mother has alleged that police did not allow her to be present in the jeep and that they took away the phone of the father of the deceased so she was unable to contact him. She further alleged that her daughters last rites were performed without her consent.Surinder Singh, deputy commissioner of police,south-west Delhi,refuted the allegations levelled at local cops handling the case. “The post-mortem report suggest that the minor’s death was caused by hanging. No external injuries were found on the body,” Singh said adding that allegations of a forced cremation were not correct.”We have records of both the parents signing their consent for post-mortem and cremation,” Singh added.Swati Maliwal, chairperson of Delhi Commision of Women (DCW), along with Neelam Garg, the incharge of rape crises cell, Neelam Narang, on Friday afternoon reached the cremation ground to inquire into the matter.In a press note sent to the media by DCW read, “upon preliminary enquiry, the Commission learnt that the Police had approached the pandit of the shamshan ghat almost 2.5 hours before, to facilitate the last rites of the deceased. This is strange for at that time, even her post-mortem had not been completed. The Commission spoke to the SDM of the area over phone, who denied that even he had not been intimated of the case as mandated under Section 174 of CrPC”.Speaking to dna, a senior DCW official said,”We are waiting for the post- mortem report to establish whether the minor was sexually assaulted but allegations of a forced cremation are very serious. This matter needs to be probed.”

Jharkhand Maoists acquiring lethal M-16 rifles

Officials of National Investigation Agency (NIA), who are probing arms smuggling in north-eastern states, have come across evidence that suggests Maoists operating in Jharkhand have been supplied with sophisticated M-16 rifles. dna has learnt that officials of anti-terrorism squads (ATS) and special task forces (STF) from almost half-a-dozen states have been called for a meeting with NIA’s top brass which is to be held in the first week of July.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The agenda of the meeting is to discuss the latest development and possibility of a joint force comprising NIA sleuths and officers of the state police with an expertise to counter multi-state arms smuggling.Official sources said that the sophisticated weapons are sourced from Nagaland and get transported to the armed CPI (Maoist) in Jharkhand by arm syndicates which are operational in multiple states. The agency, according to sources, is now in talks with ATS and STF of Nagaland, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Jharkhand to chalk out a strategy from stopping the highly-sophisticated weaponry from reaching cadres of CPI (Maoist) operating in Jharkhand.The development has raised concerns within state and central intelligence agencies officials as the American-made sophisticated weapon can seriously effect operations of the security forces posted in Jharkhand where they are fighting an ultra-left armed movement.According to official sources, NIA sleuths have managed to identified individuals allegedly involved in the smuggling of M-16’s. The individuals, who are likely part of a single syndicate, belong to Punjab, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and Nagaland. The agency is likely to share the information on these individuals with the state police in the coming week. Sources further said that investigators have come across transactions of 30-40 lakh rupees made into accounts of certain individuals who were already in radar for their alleged illegal activities.Official sources also said that Munger in Bihar, is somewhat becoming an important transit point owing to its existing illegal arms markets. Munger is also home to several freelancers known for servicing and repair of sophisticated weapons such as M-16’s. Agency is also looking at the possibility of the M-16’s in non-working condition being sent to Munger for servicing followed by its distribution in pockets where Maoists continue to operate.The CPI(Maoists) had quite a presence in remote regions of Jharkhand and Andhra Pradesh, as well as in Bihar and areas in the borderlands of Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, West Bengal, and Odisha, but owing to anti-left operations of the security forces, their cadre strength has seen a steep decline. The armed group, formed in 2004 and headed by General Secretary Muppala Lakshmana Rao, aims to overthrow the Indian state and has claimed that it is waging a ‘people’s war’. Among the latest attacks of the armed group was the 2013 ambush of a convoy of Indian National Congress in Bastar which resulted in deaths of Mahendra Karma, the founder of a private militia Salva Judum.Karma’s group, which was backed by Chhattisgarh government in July 2011, was declared to be illegal and unconstitutional, by Supreme Court of India and ordered to be disbanded. CPI(Maoists) were also responsible two major ambushes on security forces in 2010. The same year in February women cadres of CPI (Maoist) killed 24 personnel of the Eastern Frontier Rifles at Silda in West Bengal and two months ambushed and killed 75 paramilitary personnel.In August 2014, the Ministry of Home Affairs has stated it might depute 2,000 personnel from the Naga Battalions of the Nagaland’s Indian Reserve Battalions (IRB) to counter Maoists in Bastar.

Dabholkar murder case: CBI team interrogates accused Tawde’s wife

A team of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), in Panvel on Tuesday, interrogated Nidhi Tawde, wife of Dr Virendrasinh Tawde, an accused in murder of Pune-based rationalist Dr Narendra Dabholkar.According to sources in CBI, a search were conducted at the couple’s Panvel residence soon after Nidhi’s interrogation. Last week, the agency had stated that Tawde was suspected to be the chief architect of Dabholkar’s murder and that interrogation of his wife and some known associates was on the cards.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Investigators had previously tried to interrogate Nidhi but she was out of the country. She had been visiting her sister in London and returned to Panvel on Monday, said agency officials.”It was a preliminary examination. If the need arises, she will be questioned again,” said a CBI official. CBI sleuths are of the opinion that Nidhi, also a doctor, might have been privy to her husband’s activities. Tawde is Hindu Janjagruti Samiti’s (HJS) chief coordinator and speaker for the controversial Sanatan Sanstha (SS).According to sources, Nidhi too is believed to be involved with these organisations. She, however, grew distant over the years and shifted her focus to her medical practice. The CBI officials said the couple was in touch with each other, but because of his Sanstha-related activities, Tawde mostly lived in an ashram. Both SS and HJS encourage their members to focus on the Hindutva cause and not be distracted by family life.Tawde, arrested earlier this month, has been accused of not only providing logistics to individuals who gunned down Dr Dabholkar in 2013, but also of being in touch with absconding SS member Sarang Akolkar, prime accused in the 2009 Goa blast case. Sources in CBI said Nidhi was also questioned regarding the whereabouts of Akolkar, who is wanted by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) for the Goa blast, in which two Sanatan members were killed when a bomb went off on a scooter they were travelling on.Agency sources told dna that Tawde, in an email to Akolkar, had stated that in order to arm a private army of 15,000, their group required proper funding to purchase weapons. Tawde had further written that if a situation arose wherein finding money became an issue, the right wing group should be prepared to “kill and steal”.Agency officials also said that between 2010 and 2012, Tawde, along with Akolkar, had attended arms training session in Goa as well as in Sangli and Pune.

Disproportionate assets case: Himachal CM Virbhadra Singh’s son questioned by CBI

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister’s son, Vikramaditya, is currently being questioned by the Central Bureau of Investigation in connection with the disproportionate assets case filed against the senior congress leader. Virbhadra Singh, has been questioned by the agency twice this month and sources had told dna that his wife Pratibha Singh would also be quizzed. The octogenarian leader was named in the DA case along with his wife and two associates. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Agency officials told dna that Vikramaditya, arrived at the CBI headquarters at around 11 am and is likely to undergo a grilling session all day long. The agency claimed that its investigators were in possession of foolproof evidence against Virbhadra Singh, his associates and partners in criminal conspiracy regarding the assets acquired in the name of his wife and children, one of whom was questioned by agency sleuths on Tuesday.
ALSO READ CBI probe is politically motivated: Virbhadra SinghThe case was registered in September last year under the Prevention of Corruption Act against the Himachal Pradesh chief minister, his wife Pratibha, his associate Chunni Lal and Life Insurance Corporation agent Anand Chauhan.Chauhan, has been accused of showing the accumulated money as proceeds of agricultural income – not taxed in India – from Singh’s apple orchard ‘Shrikhand’, located in the state.
ALSO READ Disproportionate assets case: CBI to quiz Virbhadra Singh’s wifeIt is alleged that during his 2009-12 stint as a steel minister in the UPA II government, Singh accumulated assets worth Rs 6.03 crore in his name and in the name of his family members, which were disproportionate to his known sources of income.The senior Congress leader has denied the allegations, accusing the Centre of indulging in vendetta politics.

Dabholkar case: ‘We can steal and kill in order to arm our workers’ – Tawde in email to Goa blast accused

Dr Virendra Tawde, arrested for the murder of Pune-based rationalist Dr Narendra Dabholkar, in a email to Sarang Akolkar, another accused in the case, had allegedly written that they should,”steal and kill” in order to raise a private army for the Hindutva cause. Tawde had allegedly suggested to Akolkar, a member of the Sanathan Sanstha, that their group either purchase weapons or set-up an arms factory in Uttar Pradesh. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>According to sources in the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Dr Tawde had confided in Akolkar that in order to arm their private army, the group required proper sources of funding to purchase weapons. Tawde had further written that if a situation arises wherein finding money to buy weapons becomes an issue, the right wing group should be prepared to carry out criminal incidents.A CBI source, quoting from an email allegedly sent by Tawde to Akolkar, said, “We have to raise an army of 15000 workers. The army needs weapons so either we can buy them or setup an arms manufacturing factory. We would be needing money for the same and if we don’t get it, then we can steal and kill (loot, maar ya chori chakari)”.
ALSO READ E-mail had told Virendra Tawde to focus on Dabholkar months before his murder, says CBITawde, a chief coordinator of the Hindu Janjagruti Samiti (HJS) and an important member of the Sanathan Sanstha (SS), is not only accused of being the chief architect of Dabholkar’s murder but also of overlooking the training of individuals in order fight “anti-Hindu forces”. The charge is denied by both HJS and SS, who have accused political opponents of defaming them.Agency officials also said that an unidentified Sanatan Sanstha activist, through an email, had allegedly told Tawde to concentrate on Dabholkar just before the rationalist’s murder, though Tawde, had not responded to this email. However the agency told dna that a string emails written by him to Akolkar are currently being examined. It is yet to be established whether Akolkar, who is also an accused in the 2009 Goa blasts, was behind the email telling Tawde to focus on Dr Dabholkar.
ALSO READ Dabholkar murder case: We hardly ever saw accused Dr Tawde, say shocked neighboursAkolkar, a member of Sanatan Sanstha, has been absconding for over seven years and is wanted by the National Investigation Agency (NIA). There is also a red-corner notice issued against him by the Interpol. Two suspected members of the Sanatan Sanstha were killed in the 2009 Goa blast after a bomb they were carrying on a scooter accidentally went off.Earlier this week, the CBI, named six men it believed had a direct role in Dr Dabholkar’s murder.The names include, Akolkar, along with Rudra Patil, Jaiprakash Hegde, Praveen Limkar and Vinay Pawar, who are believed to be members of the Sanstha. While Pawar, who was in February 2015 questioned in connection to the murder of Communist leader Govind Pansare, the others have been absconding since their names cropped up in the Goa blasts. According to agency officials, one weapon was used to murder both Pansare and Dabholkar.
ALSO READ Narendra Dabholkar murder case: Did accused get help from Pune cop?The agency has also identified two men who trained the shooters and could question them soon. It also said that in 2009, Tawade had attended an arms training session of Sanatan Sanstha held in Goa and in Sangli, which is home to Rudra Patil, an accused in the Goa blast. Agency sources also told dna that the funding sources of the accused are currently being probed.

Kairana ‘exodus’: 190 Muslims too migrated, to get a better lifestyle

Shamli district administration this week received a list of Muslim families that have apparently migrated from Kairana where BJP MP Hukum Singh had claimed a ‘Hindu exodus’ had been taking place due to threat of criminals belonging to a particular religion. The list handed over to the district magistrate contains names of 45 Muslim residents and has been compiled by locals who told dna that they have done so, “to bust myths of communal disharmony” in Kairana. Locals also told dna that now that they know about the “efforts being made to disrupt peace, they should be prepared the same.”<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>While confirming the latest development in Kairana, a senior official of Shamli district administration said, “Yes we have received a list of some persons who have apparently migrated from Kairana but probing the reasons behind the migration or confirming if the list is genuine is not part of our job. The list has been compiled by some private persons who wanted to let us know that migration has taken place regardless of religious identity of persons leaving their hometowns.”Individuals behind the compilation of the list said that they have further discovered that another 145 Muslim’s have left the area in the last few years and the second list will be forwarded to the district magistrate soon.The compilers of the new list claim to have brought forward other aspects of Kairana which has been forcing people to migrate such as better job opportunities, a lack of education and proper medical facilities in the area.Aaf Mohamad, who is part of a team of ‘civilian volunteers’ that prepared the list said,”Our aim is not to tell the administration that Muslim families have been forced to leave but to simply let the world know that migration of both communities has been taking place in Kairana for the last 10-15 years. There are number of reasons behind migration and crime is not the only one.”Other residents told dna that the Kairana episode had taught them a lesson that they need to stand against those spreading communal hatred ahead of elections instead of solving issues faced by people. Maulana Badar, a community leader who met with a delegation comprising of MP’s from various political parties, including JD(U), CPI(M), CPI, and NCP, said, “Lack of proper schools, sub-standard health facilities and shortage of doctors are among the issues that people here face, irrespective of their religion. We only have two doctors in the area.”Arif Chaudhary, who owns a shop in Kairana, was accompanying his friend, who had lost his phone to the local police station. Interestingly, his friend’s name also features in the BJP MP’s list even though he currently resides in Kairana.”BJP people visited the family of two businessmen that were killed in August 2014 to show the world that they sympathise with the victims. But they didn’t come here two years ago when the murder took place,” said Arif as he began to show pictures clicked during a shutdown in 2014 called by Kairana’s business community in wake of the murders of businessmen of the area.When asked to about the strike, a senior police official confirmed that a shutdown had taken place and added, “There was a shutdown but police was already hunting down the killers of the businessmen. People here were understandably upset but we were already in process of cracking down on criminal elements in Kairana”. “The truth is we had shutdown Kairana market following the deaths and demanded police take quick action. First we shutdown for eight days and then in the second phase the market was shut for a week. As the pressure built police and district magistrate came to meet us and assured us they will take action. Two years later entire Mukeem Kala gang is in prison,” Arif said, adding that there have been discussions on how to clear Kairana’s image and to really work on issues that have been forcing people to migrate.

Kairana: Only three families migrated due to fear of extortion, investigation reveals

Investigation by the district administration, carried out to probe a BJP MP’s claims of a ‘Hindu Exodus’ in Shamli’s Kairana, have concluded that only three families have migrated from their hometown due to fear of extortion. “Three cases have been found of families that suffered extortion, and police enquiry was carried out. But due to the unpleasant happenings, these families have moved to places like Panipat and Surat, to establish their businesses. However, their businesses and properties still exist in Kairana,” the district magistrate of Shamli said. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Investigations have further revealed that 16 people on the ‘Kairana list’ have died, 27 are still residing in the area and names of seven families were repeated in the list.
ALSO READ Kairana migration | We are being defamed: Kandhla’s Muslim residents tell delegation of Opposition partiesThe findings contradict claims of BJP MP Hukum Singh who had released two lists that included 346 families of Kairana and 63 families of Kandhla. The MP had claimed that 346 Hindu families of Kairana had migrated fearing criminal gangs and extortionists belonging to a particular religion. Contrary to Hukum Singh’s claims, an investigation carried out by a team comprising local police officers, officials of revenue department and district administration conducted a probe. Headed by the District magistrate Sujit Kumar, the team found out that nearly 300 Kairana residents did migrate from their hometown since 2006, but the reason behind their migration include – pursuing jobs, business interests, medical treatment and for education of children.
ALSO READ What extortion? Kairana reported just one case this year, say police”67 people are those who have left Kairana 10 years back, 179 families have left 4-5 years back, 73 of these have left within 3 years. But, they have left because of business, health and education, out of their own volition,” the report of the district administration reads.”16 people are dead, out of which three families are residing in Kairana and the rest of the other families have left years back for employment and other reasons. Names of seven families have been found duplicated. Five people are those who were government employees, like in the Municipality, and after retirement they have gone elsewhere or their ‘homeland’ or places of origin. Also, 27 families are still residing in Kairana.
ALSO READ Kairana exodus: BJP fact-finding team visits UP; muslim locals accuse them of disturbing peace”In the above, there are some cases who have moved to Shamli town or other places in Shamli district within 10 km of Kairana and out of which, many people keep coming back to Kairana often for business related or other purposes,” read a portion from the report submitted to authorities here. The administration team had carried out a door-to-door drive, recording the statements of family members and relatives of the people named in the list released by the BJP MP. Hukum Singh had also told dna that he would be releasing a new list soon.

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