Bengaluru, Jan 29: The National Investigating Agency has arrested Mohmmad Rafeeq alias Alam Jeb Afridi for his involvement in the Church Street Blast Case, Bengaluru.
An NIA note states that Alam Jeb Afridi, a SIMI cadre, is also an accused in the case relating to the organization of a terrorist training Camp by Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) at Waghamon in Kerala.
He had been absconding for more than five years and a reward of Rs. 3 lakhs had been announced by NIA for any information leading to his arrest. He had been residing in outskirts of Bangalore for nearly 3 years and was working as a mechanic for air conditioners.
During custody, he has confessed to his involvement in the Church Street Blast Case of Bangalore. It is learnt that he wanted to plant bomb inside the Coconut Grove Bar & Restaurant but was deterred by the presence of staff and therefore he planted it outside near the wall.
He had done so as per his handler who had informed him about the probable visit of an Israeli delegation to the said café for dinner that night. In preliminary examination, he had disclosed that his handler had taught him the technique of making the bomb for which he procured the material locally.
It is noteworthy that the kind of IED used in the blast is similar to the ones used in Gandhi Maidan blasts of Patna in October, 2013, Bangalore Guwahati express Train blast in Chennai in May, 2014 and Roorkee blast of Dec, 2014.
As per the available information, Afridi is also suspected to be involved in the Ahmedabad blast cases of 2008. He is considered to be a close associate of several top SIMI leaders who are absconding. He has also admitted his role in committing incident of arson at the Israeli Visa Centre in Bangalore. During search of his residence is Bangalore, the investigators recovered a lot of anti - semitic hate literature.
The forensic examination of the IED used in Bangalore had revealed the use of Ammonium nitrate, Sulphur and Potassium Chlorate in the explosive mixture used in preparation of IED, packed in a iron pipe.
He has also confessed his role in setting fire to Israeli Visa Centre in Bangalore in November, 2015. Alam Jeb Afridi has been remanded to custody of NIA for 10(ten) days by the NIA Special Court at Bangalore for his custodial examination.