Ahmedabad : Two men wanted in connection with the 2003 “jihadi conspiracy” hatched to avenge the post-Godhra riots have been arrested by Gujarat Anti-Terrorism Squad from Burhanpur in Madhya Pradesh, the ATS said on Monday.
Abdul Razak Abdul Rahim Sheikh and Mohammad Shakeel Sheikh, both aged 36, were arrested for allegedly supplying arms and ammunition to two persons in Ahmedabad in 2003 to avenge the attacks on Muslims in the state during the post- 2002 Godhra riots.
“The ATS team probing the case received information that the two accused, Abdul Razak Abdul Rahim Sheikh and Mohammad Shakeel Sheikh, were residing in Burhanpur in Madhya Pradesh by changing their identity,” the ATS said in a statement. The duo were working as mechanics at a garage in Burhanpur. The ATS kept a close watch on them before detaining them under Section 70 of the CrPC.
During questioning, their alleged role in supplying arms and ammunition to two persons in Ahmedabad came to light, following which they were arrested. “The duo had provided 10 arms and ammunition to Mahmood Saiyed residing in Tokarsahi Pol and Farddebhai staying at Mastan Mohalla in Dariyapur. The accused also had a role in supplying arms in Bhusaval, Khandva and Surat,” the ATS said. The Ahmedabad Crime Branch had registered a case against them and others on April 4, 2003 under various sections of the IPC, the Arms Act, and the Prevention of Terrorism Act.
They were today handed over to the Crime Branch for further investigation. The “jihadi conspiracy” was allegedly hatched to spread terror and eliminate leaders of the right-wing outfit VHP and other Hindu leaders to avenge the attacks on Muslims during the post-Godhra riots. The city crime branch had in 2003 lodged a case against 82 people in this connection, allegedly for receiving help from Pakistan’s intelligence agency ISI and terror outfits Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad. Over a dozen accused are still absconding.