New Delhi, Aug 10 : Two alleged al Qaeda linked ‘militants’ have been arrested in Delhi in different joint operations of central agencies, the Delhi Police and West Bengal police a week ahead of the Independence Day celebrations.
One of the two, identified as Syed Mohammed Zishan Ali, was arrested by the Delhi Police from the Delhi airport after being brought back from Saudi Arabia. Sources said Ali was wanted by the Indian agencies for more than a year.
A native of Jamshedpur in Jharkhand, Ali and his brother Syed Mohammed Arshiyan were allegedly operating from Saudi Arabia. Sources said Ali is married to the sister of Sabeel Ahmed, a cousin of the 2007 Glasgow International Airport (UK) attack mastermind Kafeel Ahmed. Kafeel had moved from Bengaluru to Saudi Arabia in 2010-11.
The two brothers were on the central intelligence agencies radar ever since their names surfaced during the interrogation of some members of the Indian sub-continent module of Al Qaeda (AQIS), including Cuttack-based cleric Abdul Rehman. These members were arrested in 2015 for their alleged role in planning some terror strikes in the country, police said.
In another operation, a 25-year-old suspected member of al Qaeda was arrested last week by the Delhi Police special cell. The arrested ‘militant’ is from Bangladesh and is an active member of AQIS, special cell officials said.
MM Oberoi, joint commissioner of police (special cell) confirmed that their team arrested Raja-ul-Ahmed on inputs shared with them by the West Bengal police that was already looking for the wanted al Qaeda-linked ‘terrorist’. Oberoi, however, refused to share details related to the date and place of Ahmed’s arrest in Delhi.
Sources said central intelligence and security agencies were also informed about Ahmed’s arrest. His joint interrogation was done while he remained in the custody of the special cell.
“Ahmed was grilled about his purpose of visit to Delhi to find out if he was sent to the city by his handlers in al Qaeda to carry out terror activities in the capital during the Independence Day celebrations,” a source in the special cell said.