CTTC will hold a media briefing around 11:30am on Monday
Dhaka Metropolitan Police's (DMP) Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit has arrested five suspected members of the banned militant outfit Ansar-al-Islam alias Ansarullah Bangla Team from Dhaka.
The arrestees are - Nijam Uddin (21), Rayhan Vhuiyan (20), Hanif Uddin Sumon (19) , Shekh Iftekharul Islam alias Arif (25), and Mufti Muslim Uddin alias Muslim(27).
Joint commissioner of CTTC Ilias Sharif confirmed the matter during a briefing at DMP Media Centre on Monday afternoon. The arrestees were planning to attack the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) temple in Dhaka, the official claimed.
“We recovered three machetes, three bags, and four smartphones from their possession,” he added.
“During primary interrogation, the arrestees admitted that they have come from different parts of the country to Dhaka in order to receive training to carry out their seditious activities. They held their secret meeting in Sabujbagh Balur Math area. Acting on a tip-off, we conducted a raid and arrested them,” furthered the CTTC official. "
He also said that three of those planning the the attack on the ISKCON temple were arrested in November last year and interrogated. During that interrogation, the name of Nazmul alias Usman Gani alias Abu Ayyub al-Ansari, a Kuwaiti expatriate, surfaced.
Nazmul was one of the masterminds behind the attempted murder of actor and producer Khijir Hayat Khan, who was targeted for making anti-terrorist films.
While in Kuwait, Nazmul led the planning of the assassination through a group called the "Esho Kafela Boddho Hoi".
After that he came to the country and tried to reorganize the group of arrestees and planned to attack the ISKCON temple.
“CCTC members are now trying to arrest Nazmul,” he added.
On the other hand, during preliminary interrogation, the arrested militant members of Ansar al-Islam told them that they are only following the group’s ideology.
Responding to Nazmul's call, the arrestees met in a secret meeting in Dhaka. Along with them was another militant from Dubai called Abu Kayser alias Roni. He was also involved in planning the attack on the ISKCON temple and the attempted assassination of Khijir Hayat Khan. He also came to Bangladesh for the same purpose of attacking the temple.
CTTC members are also trying to arrest him.
Regarding the arrested militants, CTTC officer Elias Sharif said : “Nizam Uddin worked at a shop in Chittagong, Raihan recently used to work in Malaysia , and Hanif worked in a ship-breaking job in Chittagong. Iftekharul Islam did his internship from the Veterinary Medicine from Mymensingh Agricultural University and Muslim Uddin worked at a madrassa in Boalmari in Faridpur.