While going through some chats from Ahmed’s phone, it was found he was recruiting youngsters from various cities in the country.
Mumbai: Twenty-six-year-old Nazim Ahmed, who was arrested from Mumbra for allegedly running a terror outfit, was most likely in touch with people who are part of the banned terror organisation Islamic State, sources said. Ahmed, who was arrested on Thursday in a joint operation of the Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh ATS teams, is being investigated for being the leader of an outfit having roots in Bijnor, UP and planning an attack at various locations in Maharashtra.
ATS officials suspect that Ahmed was regularly in touch with ISIS counterparts. “While we don’t think he was officially a part of ISIS, we suspect that they were communicating with him. We are trying to find out details about the same,” said a source.
The source added that while going through some chats from Ahmed’s seized phone, it was found that he was recruiting many youngsters from various cities in the country. “He had travelled to many cities in the past few months and officials from those states are looking into his travel details,” the source said.
He explained further that Ahmed himself did most of the recruitment. “While roping in youngsters he would tell them that they would be working for the Islamic State. While he had his own outfit, he used IS’ name to make them feel special about what they were going to do,” the source said. He added that while they have learnt that an attack was planned in the state, whether Mumbai would be a part of the attack, is still being looked into.
The officials are now analysing the chats gathered from Ahmed’s phone. “These chats are with the other accused arrested from Bijnor, Punjab and some with people who we are still trying to track down. Once we have all the transcripts of the chats, we will investigate further,” the source said. Ahmed has been kept in custody in Lucknow and booked under sections of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).