SIMI's five: 2 down, three more to go
The Madhya Pradesh ATS which has said that the two men killed in Telangana today are part of the same five member gang which had fled from the Khandwa jail in the year 2013.
Five operatives of the SIMI have been on the run since 2013 ever since they escaped from a jail in Khandwa, Madhya Pradesh and this has been giving nightmares to the police and the National Investigating Agency.
The two people killed have been identified as Ejazzuddin Mohammad and Zakir Hussain. They were killed in an encounter at Nalgonda district while they were trying to escape after killing a constable.
Robbery was motive again
The SIMI operatives who have been on the run are alleged to have taken part in a series of crimes which include two robberies-one at Karimnagar and the other at Madhya Pradesh.
Their involvement was also found in the Chennai train and Bijnor blasts. The NIA was also checking to find out if they were also involved in the Church Street blasts at Bengaluru.
The five operatives who have been on the run were identified as Ejazzudin Mohammad, Zakir Hussain, Aslam, Amjad and Mehboob. The Madhya Pradesh ATS had said that they had escaped in a bid to revive the SIMI and it was for this reason they had carried out robberies in several places.
They were back in Telangana for a second time and this time too they were attempting a robbery when the constable tried to apprehend them. They opened fire on the constable and were attempting to flee, but were killed in an encounter.
Confusion over identity
At first the Hyderabad police said that these were two gangsters. Eye witnesses however claimed that during the encounter these two were chanting religious slogans. The police however said that they were verifying the antecedents of the two persons.
However the Madhya Pradesh ATS on looking at the pictures of the two persons stated that these were the two men who had escaped from Khandwa.
They have requested the Hyderabad police for more information. Hyderabad police officials say that they are checking into this and for now it appears as though these two were part of the same gang of five which had broken out of jail.
Home Minister had cautioned states
Home Minister Rajnath Singh had recently cautioned the states of Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh about these five operatives. He had said that as long as these five are on the run, there is a high security risk.
Moreover the Intelligence Bureau also had said that they were roaming across the country and had even attended a camp in Aluva, Kerala. They had also hatched a plan to free SIMI supremo, Safdar Nagori who is lodged in a Gujarat jail.
With these two persons dead, the NIA and the other police officials will continue their search for the other three who continue to be at large.