Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Alok Kumar inspecting the material seized from the rented house of terror accused Mohd Shariq in Mysuru at the Mangaluru Police Commissioner’s office on November 21, 2022. Photo Credit: Special Arrangement
Mohammed Shariq, 24, the alleged bomber Mangaluru autorickshaw blast caseKarnataka’s Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Alok Kumar said at a press conference in Mangaluru on Monday, “was influenced by a terrorist organization which has a global presence.”
Mr Kumar named Arafat Ali, now hiding in Dubai, as the “immediate handler” of Shariq, who was handled by Abdul Mateen Taha, a wanted terror accused in the Islamic State (IS) offshoot Al Hind ISIS Bengaluru module case was. The alleged objective of the modules located in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu was to create an “IS province” in the jungles of South India. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has placed Taha in the most wanted list. The NIA is expected to take over the Mangaluru blast probe.
Karnataka police said they have recovered a picture from the phone of the injured Sharik, in which he is seen posing with a pressure cooker which appears to have been short circuited.
“We suspect that he rigged the Improvised Explosive Device [IED] Took a picture in Mysore on 19th November and then boarded the bus to Mangaluru with him. The picture seems to be inspired by the Islamic State. We are probing to whom he sent the picture and whether it was a suicide bombing mission or not, a senior police officer said.
Shariq’s family members visited the hospital where he was being treated and identified him. He has suffered over 40% burns in the blast and is being treated in the intensive care unit and is yet to be questioned.
Meanwhile, the police have conducted raids at seven places including Mangaluru, Mysuru and Shivamogga and detained four people, who are said to be associates of Shariq, with whom he was in touch since September 2022. One of them is from Udhagamandalam in Tamil Nadu, two from Mysore and one from Mangaluru.
TN police swung into action
“The investigation is now spread across Karnataka and beyond. Tamil Nadu Police is cooperating with us. We are also in touch with the central agencies,” Mr Kumar said. He said the police found material used to make explosives, including 150 match boxes, sulphex sulfur powder, nuts and bolts, circuits, multi-functional delay timers, mixer-grinders, mobile phones, from Shariq’s rented house in Mysore. Display items and a few others are included. chemicals.
Mr Kumar said Shariq had fled Shivamogga after two of his associates were arrested in September 2022, and since then had lived at various places and had taken a house on rent in Mysuru, where he was running a mobile repair training institute. had joined. “Preliminary probe revealed that Shariq had come to Mangaluru on November 10, possibly for a reconnaissance. Based on his activities on November 10, we are trying to analyze what could have been his target.
Investigation revealed that he left Mysore on November 19 and traveled to Mangaluru via Madikeri and Puttur. He got down from the bus on the outskirts of Mangaluru and hired an auto rickshaw. The blast occurred near Kankanadi at 4.40 pm while he was in an autorickshaw. Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai had finished his program in Mangaluru that day and left for Bengaluru at the same time.