Old JMB leases CHT lands for militant camps

Banned militant organisation, Jamaatul Mujahideen, Bangladesh (JMB) is conducting militant training in the CHTs areas after leasing lands.

Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit of Dhaka Metropolitan Police made this new disclosure on Monday.

They have also set up training camps in the hill areas. CTTC chief Monirul Islam said this while addressing a press conference at the DMP Media centre in the capital. Earlier on Sunday night, Special Action Group of CTTC in a raid at Ghatara area in the capital and arrested three members of JMB.

They were identified as Abu Raihan alias Mahmood alias Hadi, Habibur Rahman alias Chan Miah and Razibur Rahman alias Rajib alias Sagar. Among the three arrestees, Abu Raihan is acting Ameer of the old JMB.

Monirul said, “ JMB in association with some local people, has established a Madrasa.  In the guise of  the Madrasa, they were conducting militant training  there.” He said, “ CTTC has been keeping a special surveillance on old JMB and Neo JMB since a long time. At one stage, they arrested three members of the old JMB.”

He claimed that arrested Raihan is the acting head of Bangladesh chapter of  Global JMB. CTTC seized 150 detonators, Jihadi publications , a commando knife and 20 pieces of gel used in explosives. During the primary interrogation, Raihan admitted that when he was a student of Tongi Tamirul Millat, he joined the JMB in 2010.

He was radicalized by deceased Talha and Dr Nazrul Islam. Due to his dedication, he shifted to Cox’s Bazar at the order of the JMB. He worked as the chief of JMB’s one department in the Chattogram area.

Talha gave him a bag of commando knives for training. In 2013, he married a sister in law of militant Khokon. He handed over the bag of commando knives to Nurul Hakim of Cox’s Bazar.

On December 12 last year, Hakim was arrested with 30 commando knives and huge explosives.  Habibur Rahman was chief of JMB’s finance division. He was committing robberies in different parts of the country to collect terror funds.  On March 29 last year, he was arrested while committing robbery in city’s Dakkhin Khan area. After getting bail, he again involved in JMB.

The CTTC boss said, “ Raihan is a brother in law of absconding JMB top leader Salaudin Salehi, who was hijacked by JMB militants who carried out a deadly attack on a prison van in Trishal in Mymensing a few years ago.”

Selehi declared himself the Amir of Global JMB when Khorshed Alam was Amir of JMB’s Bangladesh unit.

After the death of Khorshed in 2017, Raihan was  made Amir. CTTC claimed on November 24,  Raihan was going to the training camp in the  CHTs with  Chan Miah and Habibur. Habib’s residence is in the capital while Rajib’s home is in the Netrokona border area. This is why new militants easily met at the residence of Rajib. Monirul said, “  The three militants mainly involved in collecting terror funds by robberies.”

Except this, Maolana Rakib, who is a relative of slain JBM founder Shayek Abdur Rahan was helping them by sending funds from abroad.

Responding to a question, Monirul said, “ JMB always takes preparation for carrying out terror attacks. The arrested militants also took training and preparation for attacks.”

He however said, we are yet to confirm whether they have any link with Neo JMB. Replying to  a question he said, “ We have already identified all the five militants of a cell of Neo JMB who carried out several attacks on police.” Three have been arrested and two are absconding. We have collected their pictures, he further said.

We have demolished their network and taken initiatives so that no new cell can grow up again, he added.

While replying to a question, he said, “ JMB feels that setting up training camps in remote CHT area is quite safe.” We are investigating how JMB took lease. We have identified the persons and are trying to arrest them.”