Hyderabad: 1 more arrested by MP ATS cops in ‘conversion racket’

Hyderabad: The Madhya Pradesh ATS arrested one more person from the city for alleged connection to a global Islamic organization Hizb-ut-Tahrir on Wednesday. Five persons from the city were arrested on Tuesday in a joint operation of Intelligence Bureau, Madhya Pradesh ATS and Telangana counter intelligence wing.

Mohd Salman, of Jawaharnagar was arrested by the Madhya Pradesh ATS on Wednesday. He was absconding since Tuesday morning when the raids began in Hyderabad. Police said that Md Saleem alias Saurabh Raj Vaidhya (41), Sheikh Junaid (32), a dentist, Md Abbas Ali alias B Venu Kumar (36), an auto driver, Abdur Rahman alias Devi Prasad Panda (33), a cloud service engineer and native of Odisha, and Md Hameed (30), a daily wager, were apprehended on Tuesday.

Md Saleem alias Saurabh Raj Vaidhya (41), the head of the pharmaceutical biotechnology department of a private college in Hyderabad, had come to the city from MP in 2018.

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Hyderabad: Intelligence cell kept tabs on 5 arrested in MP ‘conversion racket’

Officers seized literature, laptops, pen drives, hard disks, cash and other materials were seized from them. The MP Police has registered a case under sections 13, 17 and 18 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, and other relevant sections. A special court has remanded them to ATS custody till May 19.

The accused reportedly used various encrypted communication apps to communicate with each other, the MP police claimed. Intelligence agencies were keeping a close watch on the people who were directly or indirectly in contact with the members and sympathizers of Hizb-ut-Tahrir (HuT) an alleged terrorist group after the arrest of Ziyavudeen Baqavi of Tamil Nadu was arrested in February 2022 for allegedly radicalising vulnerable Muslim youths to establish an Islamic state and enforce a constitution written by a radical preacher.

Three of the persons who were detained in the operation are ‘revert’ Muslims. One of them is well known for his Islamic classes and actively involved in helping new revert Muslims in administrative matters. He was also on the radar of the Telangana police and central law enforcement agencies.

According to various agencies, HuT has avoided global scrutiny radar while spreading its ideology and was becoming a more dangerous ‘terrorist group’ than ISIS. India had input from global security agencies about its expansion plans. The HuT is alleged to have a support base in nearly 50 countries.