An Islamic extremist organisation Ansarullah Bangla Team motivated by Anwar Al-Awlaki, a Yemen-based Al-Qaeda activist, has emerged as a new militant threat to the country.
The radical organisation allegedly involved in the killing of blogger Rajeeb Haider and attacks on two other bloggers is patronised by Markajul Ulum Al-Islamia located in the capital’s Basila of Mohammad-pur, said investigators.
“The outfit is assembling all banned militant organisations under a same umbrella and giving them training on how to make bombs easily and carry out suicidal attacks,” said a DB official.
“The target group of the organisation is to involve brilliant youths, including teachers and students, from solvent families in militant activities,” he said.
Earlier in April, the investigators, after the arrest of eight activists of Ansarullah Bangla Team in connec-tion with Rajeeb murder and attacks on blogger Asif Mahiuddin, said the detainees divulged names of 12 people who were on their hit list.
Following the arrest of Muhammad Jasimuddin Rahmani in Barguna with 30 of his disciples on Monday, DB officials disclosed names of those on the hit list.
The list includes Home Minister Muhiuddin Khan Alamgir, Telecommunications Minister Shahara Khatun, minister without portfolio Surunjit Sen Gupta, educationist Dr Jafar Iqbal, Shahriar Kabir, self-exiled poet Daud Haider, blogger Asif Mohiuddin, slain blogger Rajib Haider, Taslima Nasrin, Arifur Rahman and Ibrahim Khalil.
Shaymol Kumar Nath, Barguna district police superintendent, said Sub-inspector Habibur Rahman an evening shift MBA student of the Dhaka University, Kawsar Ahmed, 26, a wallet vendor in Mirpur, Kamal Uddin, 23, a carpenter from Noakhali, and Kamal Hossain, 28, a security guard of Mutual Trust Bank from Barisal for attempting to murder blogger Asif Mohiuddin on January 14 in Uttara.
The arrestees said that Abdul Karim, an Arabic student of Dhaka University, and one Rana were the masterminds of the killing of Rajib.
Muhammad Jasimuddin Rahmani who was arrested with 30 of his disciples in Barguna on Monday is the chief of the Markajul Ulum Al-Islamia.
Jasimuddin was inspired by the ideology of Anwar Al-Awlaki, a Yemen-based al-Qaeda leader who was killed in 2011 in a US drone attack.
After the arrest of Jasimuddin DB police raided his residence and office near Markajul Ulum Al Islamia madrasa on Tuesday from where they seized computers, laptops, huge Islamic books and CDs contain-ing provocative sermons.
Earlier on March 2, DB arrested five students of private North South University in connection with the killing of blogger Ahmed Rajib Haider.
Those five students confessed that Jasimuddin was their sources of inspirations and they were indoc-trinated by his ideology.
Monirul Islam, joint commissioner of DB police, said the hit list they recovered from the Ansarullah mil-itants include names of two ministers and some top socialist leaders of the country.
“Primarily we are suspecting that they were planning to kill those people but we will say for sure after interrogating the arrestees,” he said.
A source said they do not have any clear idea about the organisational strength of the organisation but they assumed there are 200 to 300 people are active with the website of the outfit who believe it is their duty as Muslim to kill those who work against Allah, Hadith, Quran and Prophet.
“They also believe the government does not follow Islamic principles and that is why it is their duty as citizens to kill them [those who are anti-Islam].”
Who is Jasim?
Hailing from Heulibuniya village Barguna sadar upazila, Jasim studied at Deobandh Madrasa in India and at Sabelus Salama Madrasa in Haidrabad. After his return he served Jamia Rahmania Madrasa and Mahmudia Madrasa in Barisal till 2004.
In 2004, he joined the Borguna Central Sadarghat Mosque as its Khatib and later he went to Saudi Ara-bia and joined as a part-time teacher at Lipsanos University in Madina. After he came back he joined Dhanmondi Hatembagh Mosque as its Khatib and then he established the Markajul Ulum Al-Islamiya.