Neo-JMB had planned to launch multiple attacks in Sylhet even after the start of ‘Operation Twilight’, an anti-militant operation led by Army Para Commandos.
The revelation came from Police Bureau of Investigation (PBI) after its two-year investigation. PBI officials came to know all information with regards to the deadly militant attack.
They are going to submit a chargesheet soon in the cases filed in connection with the sensational five-day anti-militant drive at Atia Mahal in the city’s Shibbari where three officials including Intelligence Director of Rapid Action Battalion Lt Col Abul Kalam Azad were killed.
Some 17 militants will be accused in the chargesheet. As per their conspiracy, militants blasted grenades, leaving seven people dead, including three police personnel. Militants had kept their back-up groups for carrying the multiple attacks, which was the first of its kind in the country.
Sources said militant leader Mosharaf Hossain alias Shohel, who was the Chattogram Divisional coordinator of Neo-JMB, masterminded the second suicide grenade attack outside Atiya Mahal.
They held serious meeting for the second grenade attack. Militant Nazim Uddin and another unidentified one were present at the spot.
A total of 17 militants were involved in the grenade attack.
Among them, 14 were killed in the anti-militant operations in different parts of the country including in Sylhet and Moulivabazar after the Operation Twilight. The remaining three are still alive.
After submission of the charge sheet, the trial would start against the three militants.
Responding to a question, on condition of anonymity, a senior PBI official told Bangladesh Post that the chargesheet would be submitted within one month.
For the sake of the investigation, PBI repeatedly denied to disclose the names of the accused militants.
The drive, Operation Twilight, went on from January 24 to January 28, 2017, and resulted in the death of four suspected militants and seven other people including the high official of RAB.
The militants — Jahurul Haque, his wife Arjina Begum and Hasan — who were arrested in connection with several other militancy cases, were also shown arrested in the case.
The three are the first people to be shown arrested in the case filed after the drive at Atia Mahal.
PBI has been investigating two cases related to the Atia Mahal anti-militant drive. One was filed over the explosives recovered from the militant hideout, and another was for twin blasts near the building. The trio has been shown arrested in first case.
During the anti-militant drive led by Bangladesh Army, four militants including a woman were killed inside the hideout.
On the evening of January 25, 2017, while the drive was ongoing, two grenades were blasted around 400 metres away from the Atia Mahal, which claimed seven lives including RAB intelligence chief Lt Col Abul Kalam Azad and two police officers.
Police filed two separate cases with Moglabazar Police Station accusing unnamed people after the operation.
Following an order of Police Headquarters on May 9 that year, PBI took over the cases from Moglabazar Police Station and started investigation from May 13.
Arrested Jahurul Haque is brother of killed militant Monjiara Begum Alias Morjina Begum.
Jahurul and his wife Arjina were arrested in a case filed for Sitakunda anti-militant drive while Hasan is an accused arrestee of Chandina and Mirsarai anti-militant drive cases.