The Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) on Friday arrested two members of the banned organisation, Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI), who had been absconding for a long time.
Madhya Pradesh Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) has arrested two members of SIMI (a banned organisation) who were absconding since a long time. One of them was arrested from Burhanpur and the other from Delhi’s Okhla.
— Anti-Crime Team (@AC_Team_India) December 13, 2019
One of the two arrested terrorists, Illyas Akram Shaikh, is a relative of Indian Mujahideen leader Abdul Subhan Qureshi, who was arrested by Special Cell in 2018. The other one arrested is identified as Ejaz Akram Shaikh. Both the brothers were residents of Kurla in Mumbai. They allegedly fled from Mumbai after the 2006 serial train blast in the city.
The ATS Maharashtra had booked the accused duo for anti-national terror activities in 2006 after a crackdown on members of the banned terror outfit SIMI and its offshoot Indian Mujahideen (IM) was initiated by security agencies. An FIR was registered on July 29, 2006. During the raids conducted then, the ATS had claimed to have recovered a large number of explosives and objectionable material from the house of one, Ehtesham Siddiqui in Mira Road in Mumbai, Maharastra, after which he was subsequently arrested.
Siddiqui was the main accused in the July 11, 2006, serial train bomb blasts in the city which killed 188 people and left several persons injured. He was sentenced to death in 2015 by the MCOCA court.
Reportedly, Siddiqui’s interrogation led to Illiyas’s arrest from Delhi’s Shaheen Bagh area late on Friday night. His brother was nabbed from Burhanpur in Madhya Pradesh. Both were brought on transit remand to Mumbai where they were produced in court and remanded to three-day police custody.
The two terror suspects were arrested with the help of MP ATS and Delhi police on the basis of a tip-off.
The duo was a part of the module run by former General Secretary of Students’ Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) Safdar Nagori, along with terror convict Ehtesham Siddiqui and Abdul Subhan Qureshi alias Tauqeer who is also known as Osama Bin Laden of India.
Ehtesham Siddiqui has been convicted in two cases related to terror activities, while Tauqeer, who was arrested from Delhi last year and is awaiting trial in cases of serial blasts in Uttar Pradesh, Jaipur, Ahmedabad and Delhi between 2007 and 2008.
The ATS Maharashtra believes the arrests to be a major breakthrough as it will bring to light details about the sleeper cells of terror outfits like Indian Mujahideen and SIMI and other associates working with them.