Arrested SIMI activist could be behind Indian Mujahideen emails


Lucknow : Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) activist Shahbaz, arrested Monday for his alleged involvement in the Jaipur and Ahmedabad serial blasts, is an IT expert and believed to be the brains behind the ‘Indian Mujahideen’ email sent to media houses minutes before the Ahmedabad bombings, officials said Tuesday.

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Shahbaz was nabbed Monday by the Jaipur Police and the Anti Terrorist Squad (ATS) of Uttar Pradesh from the Aminabad locality of the state capital.

Shahbaz used to run a computer institute and a cyber café near the Mahila Degree College in the city.

“He was running his cyber cafe for the past two years and the police have seized eight hard disks from his institute. Call details of two of his mobile phones are being gathered,” Lucknow police spokesperson, Ghulam Abbas, said.

An ATS official, requesting anonymity, said Shahbaz is an IT expert and is suspected to be the brains behind the Indian Mujahideen emails that were sent to media houses minutes before the July 26 Ahmedabad blasts in which around 50 people were killed.

“Shahbaz was a close associate of SIMI head Safdar Nagori and had attended training camps with him in Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka in May before the serial blasts in Jaipur and Ahmedabad,” the ATS official said.

Shahbaz is also a close associate of Abu Bashar, the main accused in the Ahmedabad serial blasts who was arrested from the Naka locality of Lucknow a few days ago.

Shahbaz was handed over to Jaipur Police on a transit remand of 48 hours. Seven other people were arrested in Jaipur early Monday for alleged involvement in the May 13 Jaipur bombings in which more than 60 people were killed.

“He was living in the old Lucknow locality. We recovered a ration card, mentioning the names of his wife, brother, relatives, from his residence,” the source added.