Two more SIMI activists arrested in Indore

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Indore, Mar 31 : Two more activists of the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) were arrested on charges of providing assistance to its former chief Safdar Nagori and 12 members of the banned student organisation.

The arrested were identified as Abdul Razzak and Rais Ahmed Khan. They were criminals with past records and cases have been registered against them under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) for providing assistance to the top SIMI activists.

Superintendent of Police Anshuman Singh Yadav said the two from Indore were being questioned in connection with their involvement in illegal activities and helping anti-national elements.

The duo were arrested as part of state police effort on Sunday evening to expose the operations of the banned outfit.

On March 27, the All India General Secretary of SIMI, Safdar Nagori, was arrested by the Special Task Force (STF) of the Madhya Pradesh Police along with twelve members of the banned student organisation.

All thirteen have been remanded to police custody till April 11 by an Indore court.

The SIMI activists are being interrogated for further leads and some arms have been seized from the spot of the arrests.

According to ATS Chief Hemant Karkare, three of the 13 arrested SIMI leaders are wanted in connection of a case under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) filed in Maharashtra.

"The names of the three had cropped up during the interrogation of (July 11 serial train blasts accused) Ehtesham Siddiqui. Our team had gone to Ujjain in 2006 searching for them but did not find them," he said.

Karkare added that names of Shibly Abdul, Safdar Nagori and one more, had come up during the interrogation.

But he further added that there is no evidence yet to confirm their involvement in the July 11 train blasts that killed 187 people besides injuring more than 700.

Police sources said security agencies had been trailing Nagori for a while and managed to track down the SIMI men, following a tip-off from intelligence agencies.

The crackdown against SIMI comes just a week after Minister of State for Home, Sriprakash Jaiswal told the Lok Sabha that the banned outfit and its associates were planning serial blasts in the country and the Centre has extended its ban imposed on SIMI for another two years.

Nagori is alleged to have established links with the operatives of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), Pakistan's external intelligence agency, and other Islamist fundamentalist leaders in a bid to revive SIMI cadres under the umbrella of a different outfit.

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