JMB wanted to topple Bangladesh govt: NIA chargesheet on

Establishment of Sharia rule by overthrowing the democratically-elected government in Bangladesh was the motive of Burdwan module of banned terror outfit Jamiat-ul-Mujahdieen Bangladesh (JMB), NIA claimed today.

Filing a charge sheet against 21 people, including four Bangladeshi nationals, filed in a special court in Kolkata, National Investigation Agency (NIA), which had probed the October 2 blast, said the mastermind of the module was Sakil Gazi, a Bangladeshi national, who perished in the explosion.

Giving details of the case, NIA said that all 21 were allegedly involved in the conspiracy to overthrow the existing democratic government in Bangladesh "through violent terrorist acts and replace it with a hard-line Sharia based Islamic rule, which came to light after the accidental blast."

The investigation by NIA, which was spread over a number of states has found that JMB has established its network in India primarily in West Bengal, Assam and Jharkhand.

JMB's "activities in India primarily included recruitment, radicalisation and training of vulnerable youths in a systematic and organised manner and in pursuance of the conspiracy, they had established organisational bases at certain districts of West Bengal like Nadia, Burdwan, Murshidabad and Birbhum as well as in Sahebganj district of Jharkhand.

"These bases were used for organising radicalisation programmes, organisational meetings, fund collection drives, hideouts for cadres and their families," the charge sheet said.

It said "a network of terrorist training camps at selected Madrasas and other hideouts was found to be in operation where selected youths were indoctrinated into the violent jihadi ideology as well as trained for violent action by using explosives and firearms.

"The efforts of recruitment, radicalisation and training of vulnerable Indian youths was undertaken by members of JMB for preparing a large group of Indians based on their common religious and linguistic identity, primarily in the Indian states bordering Bangladesh, to join the JMB and utilise them for the movement to overthrow the existing democratic government in Bangladesh", it said.

Among those charge sheeted was one of the co-founders of JMB's Burdwan module Sheikh Rahamatullah alias Sajjid who was allegedly smuggling of bombs to Bangladesh. NIA is also looking for three more Bangladeshi nationals including Talha Sheikh, Kausar and Nasirullah who have been named as absconders in the charge sheet.

Kausar is believed to be a mastermind in the case who managed to flee the area apparently due to the allegedly lackadaisical approach of West Bengal Police, sources said, adding that he had been hiding in Birbhum till October 5 before escaping from there.