Vol. 5 Num 632 Thu. March 09, 2006  
Front Page

Cops set to hunt for 2 top JMB militants
Investigators verifying clues from Rahman, other arrestees

Investigators are working out an operation plan to arrest the two fleeing Majlish-e-Shura members of outlawed Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) Salahuddin and Khaled Saifullah.

The investigators are scrutinising the information squeezed out of JMB chief Abdur Rahman, Shura members Ataur Rahman Sunny, Abdul Awal, Hafez Mahmud and Bangla Bhai's wife Fahima Khatun for clues to trap them.

Sources said Rahman has given the investigators detailed information about the JMB network, funding, connections in and outside the country and bank accounts and transactions.

But they declined to disclose the information "for the sake of investigation".

JMB second-in-command Bangla Bhai, who is undergoing treatment at Bangladesh Rifles hospital for burns and bomb injuries he suffered during his capture, meantime, is recovering.

Hospital sources said his bomb injuries will be cured in seven to 10 days but he would take some more time to recover from burns.

Interrogators will start quizzing him only after he recovers totally, said sources, adding, no high official of Rab or BDR visited him until yesterday noon.

His wife Fahima told the investigators Bangla Bhai went to Mymensingh after the August 17 countrywide blasts and was staying there under the arrangement of Shura member Salahuddin, who was JMB in-charge of Sylhet-Mymensingh region.

Bangla Bhai stayed in four hideouts before his capture from the last one at Rampur village in Muktagachha on March 6.

Sources said the Task Force Interrogation Cell comprising members from police, Special Branch, National Security Intelligence, Directorate General of Forces Intelligence and Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) is interrogating the arrestees except Bangla Bhai in Uttara.

The JMB second-in-command has begun talking from March 7 but his sentences are not totally understandable.

But his words are not being recorded as no-one is staying inside his room. Only doctors go to the room and come out after examining him and giving him medication.

"He is shouting at the hospital staff," said a source.

A board of 18 doctors -- six of the BDR hospital and 12 from others -- are examining him.

There are more beds in the cabin but no-one else, leave alone a patient, is staying in the room, which is kept under lock and key.

"Although he is improving, he'll take time to make complete recovery," Inspector General of Police (IGP) Abdul Quayyum told reporters at the home ministry yesterday.

The police boss said they do not want to quiz Bangla Bhai right now. "It may cause infection if he comes in contact with people."

Fahima, who was brought to the capital in the night of March 7, told interrogators they had four hideouts in Mymensingh.

Following the August 17 attacks, Bangla Bhai went to Mymensingh and took shelter in a house in the town. Sensing that the law enforcers have got information about that hideout, he shifted to another house.

Two or three days later, a Rab team raided the first hideout but did not find Bangla Bhai.

After Sunny's arrest, Bangla Bhai shifted to another house on RK Mission Road fearing Sunny, who knew about the second hideout, might disclose its location during interrogation, an investigator said quoting Fahima.

Immediately after their arrest on March 6, Fahima said her husband did not meet her for about a month. She said Bangla Bhai did not stay at the RK Mission Road house during this period.

The Rab finally came to learn from different sources including JMB Shura members that Bangla Bhai was staying in a house in Rampur village in Muktagachha, the fourth den.

Asked about Bangla Bhai's activities and hideout in Bagmara in Rajshahi, Fahima expressed her ignorance, saying her husband did not take her to Rajshahi.

A Sylhet court yesterday remanded Islami Bank Manager Abu Walid Chowdhury, Union Parishad Member Nurunnabi Deshi and mason Abdul Haque for four days to find their links with the JMB, reports our staff correspondent in Sylhet.

The police said Deshi and Haque helped Abdur Rahman's men rent the East Shaplabagh house in Sylhet where the JMB chief was arrested on March 2 along with his accomplices and family.

While serving as the third officer at Islami Bank's Laldighirpar branch in Sylhet in February 1999, Walid introduced former Habiganj district Jamaat-e-Islami ameer Saidur Rahman for opening a bank account.

After recovering Saidur's chequebook from Rahman's den, the law enforcers now suspect that Saidur was the medium of JMB's funding in Sylhet.

The Rab and police raided several places in Habiganj, Sunamganj and Sylhet over the last few days in search of Saidur in vain.

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