Bengaluru, March 24: Where are these five men and what is taking the police and the National Investigating Agency (NIA) this long to re-arrest them?
The five men in question are Zakir, Aizazuddin, Aslam, Amjad and Mehboob. All these are members of the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) who escaped from the Tantya Bheel Jail in Khandwa on Oct 1, 2013 and till date they are on the run and have managed to dodge the police.
There are several inputs regarding the five persons who are alleged to have been involved in a spate of incidents which include terror strikes in Chennai and Bengaluru and also a spate of robberies in Andhra Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday, March 23 had written to the Chief Ministers of Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Tamil Nadu telling to expedite investigations into cases of terror in their states.
However, investigations the terror cases pending in these states are directly dependant on these five persons who have been blamed for these acts.
The National Investigating Agency which is handling the Chennai train blasts case had stated that it was the handiwork of the five youth who are missing.
Even the Bengaluru police probing the Church Street blasts case have blamed the five youth for the incident.
NIA steps in:
All these days the NIA had left it up to the police to track down these youth.
However, with the case files piling up without any closure, the NIA has stepped in and even sent a team to Madhya Pradesh to track down these persons.
Four officers from the NIA have been camping in Madhya Pradesh seeking information about these persons.
They are speaking to relatives and friends for more information, but so far nothing concrete has emerged.
The weakest link which the NIA is looking to capitalize on is Mehboob. He was one of the five persons who escaped from jail and has been on the run ever since.
A resident of the Ganesh Talai area in Khandwa, Mehboob is the one the NIA could manage to nab once there is more forthcoming information on him.
He was injured very badly in the month of September 2014 when an explosive he was preparing while he was in Bijnor in Uttar Pradesh accidentally exploded. His mother is said to have joined him to look after him.
The NIA feels that due to the injury he may be stationed in one place and may not be with the other four members. We have been gathering information about his whereabouts and feel that he is somewhere in Madhya Pradesh itself.
They may not be together:
Investigators feel that the five persons may not be together. They may be operating separately and there is no mobile phone communication between them.
This appears to be a deliberate ploy to do away with technology so that they are not tracked.
As per the last inputs that the police have got, two of them could be holed up in Karnataka, two in Chennai while one in Madhya Pradesh itself.
The Intelligence Bureau which has managed to pick up some inputs regarding their movements has intimated the Home Ministry about the same which prompted the directive to the Chief Ministers of these three states.
The nabbing of these persons is extremely crucial since they have been termed as on the loose and dangerous.
They had escaped from jail in a bid to revive the SIMI and have managed to carry out a couple of attacks and robberies during their free run in the country.