2008 Gujarat blasts mastermind arrested by Delhi Police

Last Updated 22 January 2018, 14:47 IST

Police have arrested co-founder of the Indian Mujahideen (IM), who is linked to the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) and one of the suspected main conspirators of the 2008 Gujarat serial blasts, after a brief gunfight in east Delhi.

Abdul Subhan Qureshi (46), software engineer-turned-bombmaker, was apprehended by the Delhi Police's anti-terror unit Special Cell from Ghazipur on Saturday evening following an input that he would come to meet an old acquaintance in Ghazipur.

According to Deputy Commissioner of Police (Special Cell) P S Kushwah, Qureshi was living in Nepal using a fake identity. Qureshi, who was under the radar of the Special Cell and intelligence agencies, had visited Saudi Arabia between 2015-2017.

"Twelve to 13 rounds were fired from both sides. We have recovered pistols and documents from Qureshi. He was trying to revive the SIMI and Indian Mujahideen," Kushwaha said. He was produced before a city court which send him to police custody for 14 days.

Editor of the SIMI magazine, he was described as a good organiser and his name had cropped up in investigations into the serial blasts in Mumbai and Bengaluru.

Qureshi, who hails from Mumbai and holds a reward of Rs 4 lakh declared by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), had conducted training camps in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh to train recruits for terror strikes. The recruits underwent arms training, swimming, psychological training and mountain climbing besides being trained in making petrol bombs.

They were also trained in misleading police on the whereabouts of cadres in case they are caught.

He is also chargesheeted in a case for his participation in a terrorist training camp in Kerala's Wagamon "with intent to bring hatred, contempt and to cause disaffection" against the Indian Government besides to conduct jihad to threaten the sovereignty and integrity of India.

Qureshi had joined the SIMI in his teens in the 1990s and worked as a co-instructor. When SIMI general secretary Safdar Nagori was arrested, he left the SIMI and joined hands with Bhatkal brothers to set up Indian Mujahideen.

(Published 22 January 2018, 07:36 IST)

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