Zaman sent back to UP, NIA to take custody today

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HT Bureau

GUWAHATI, Oct 10: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) is likely to take custody of Hizbul Mujahideen operative Qamar-uz-Zaman from Kanpur on Thursday as the Assam Police has sent back the terrorist to Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday.

Sources here said the NIA has registered a case and has taken over the investigation into the matter of two Hizbul Mujahideen terrorists from Assam. The operatives were allegedly trained in Jammu and Kashmir and sent to the state to set up a terror base.

Zaman was arrested by UP ATS from Kanpur on September 13. After his arrest, the Assam Police arrested eight of his friends from different locations in Assam.

The NIA had already been probing the matter for previous weeks with the Assam and UP police before taking over the case formally.

“The Assam Police have so far found that Hizbul was searching for new recruits in Assam and Qamar uz was given that reasonability,” a senior police official here said.

“They were also trying to purchase some sophisticated arms and had even initiated communication with the clandestine arms market in Dimapur but they have not purchased any weapons so far. Any terror activity can’t be carried out without money and the money trail from J&K to Assam needs to be investigated further.”

Qamar-uz-Zaman, who failed BA Part III examination, went missing in 2017 until April 2018, but he had undergone training in Pakistan in 2017 and he had taken arms training under ISIS and joined Hizbul Mujahideen.

Among the eight suspects, there are Zaman’s childhood friend 39-year-old Shahnawaz Alam and his elder brother Saiful Islam.

“We have brought Qamar uz here from UP police on a transit remand and he was produced before a local court. We sent him back to UP today for production in court tomorrow from where NIA will take over the investigation,” Assam Police Special director general Pallav Bhattacharya said.

During the police interrogation, Qamar-uz-Zaman revealed that he had visited Assam in August this year and met several people in Hojai, Nagaon, Karbi Anglong and Barpeta districts.

“Zaman also met some leaders of two Assam based organisations and contacted some other people of Meghalaya, Nagaland during his last visit to Assam,” he said.

 

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