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B’desh: Converted youths who became militants

2 May 2017 No Comment

Report in Dhaka Tribune, Apr 30, 2017 at 11.09pm
The number of converted Muslim youths being radicalised is increasing day by day. Some of them have joined banned militant outfits JMB and Ansarullah, who are responsible for the recent targeted killings across the country, detectives say.

During the recent raids, law enforcers busted several militant dens set up by such converted youths to teach how to operate arms and make explosives.

Regarding the link between militancy and the converted youths, experts say the people who have little knowledge about Islam and those who are not well off are being targeted by the militant recruiters, reports Bangla Tribune.

1. Probhat Kumar alias Abdullah (converted to Islam and holds a bomb-making factory in his house)

The Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit recovered a large number of Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) and three suicide vests along with explosives from a militant den at Porahath village in Jhenaidah on April 21.

They discovered that the house was owned by Probhat Kumar who changed his name to Abdullah after converting to Islam five years ago. Police estimate that Abdullah, who is a member of Ansarullah Bangla Team (now known as Ansar al-Islam), was using the tin-shed house to make bombs.

Abdullah lived in Thonthonpara with his parents – Chaitanya Baul and Shondhya Rani – and two siblings. He did not have terms with the neighbours. His parents rejected him after his conversion to Islam. He married a Muslim woman.
According to CTTC, Abdullah had fled the Jhenaidah hideout with his wife before the raid.

Later, 20 drums of hydrogen peroxide, 100 packets of metal balls, three suicide vests, nine suicide belts, a large cache of electric circuit, 15 jihadi books, one 9mm pistol, one magazine, seven rounds of bullets, one motorcycle, one machete, a large amount of IEDs and detonators were recovered from the den.

2. Saifullah Ozaki is one of the 10 militants whose picture was published by the law enforcers after the Gulshan and Sholakia attacks last year asking them to return home.

Ozaki is the son of Janardan Debnath and Anita Rani Debi of Koroibari village under Nobinagar upazila and was called Sujit Kumar before he was converted to Islam.

He got a scholarship, went to Japan for studies in 2001 and converted to Islam soon after. He married a Muslim woman. The couple has three sons and a daughter. After completing his education, he started teaching at Ritsumeikan University in Kyoto Prefecture as an assistant professor of business administration.

According to a report of The Japan Times, Ozaki has been missing since he left Japan for Bulgaria with his family in 2015.

He has also been named in case No 23 filed under Anti-Terrorism Act with Dhaka’s Uttara (north) police station on May 24, 2015.

Quoting The Japan Times, Canada-based online newspaper Bengal Times on July 23, 2016 reported that Ozaki had fled to Syria via Europe with his family to join the Islamic State.

3. Jhulon Debnath, a resident of Chittagong’s Hatia village, converted to Islam a year ago. Even though he went missing on September 30, 2015, his father Khagendra Debnath filed a General Diary regarding the matter last July.

In the GD, Khagendra said his family would not be liable if his son was found involved in any activities against the country.

Jhulon was jailed in a case filed by his wife under the Women and Child Repression Act on May 25, 2015. He converted to Islam after being released from the jail on November 2 the same year and named himself as Mohammad Ibrahim.

4. In a similar manner, Kajol Kanti Nath filed a GD with Chittagong’s Akbar Shah police station last year where he stated that his brother Ujjal Kantinath had been missing since 2015.

According to the GD, Ujjal owns three salons. He left his salon for some work and never returned home. Later, a GD was filed on June 10 the same year.

Ujjal had converted to Islam before he went missing but his family had no idea about his new Islamic name.

5. Pukul Das, son of Arun Kanti and Jhorna Rani Das of Chhonhara village of Chittagong district, joined banned militant outfit Ansarullah Bangla Team and took the name of Musayab Ibn Umayer. He used to work at Young One garments factory.

Umayer fell in love with a Muslim girl during his college days and converted to Islam before joining the militant group.

A diary was discovered from his table drawer after he left his house in 2011, and the first page of the diary read Allah is the owner.

Law enforcers arrested Pikul last July along with four other Ansarullah members. Police say he had plans to attack foreign citizens. He is now in jail.

6. Thirty-two-year-old Gauri Kumar Modol of Satkhira converted to Islam while he was in higher secondary in 2003 and came to be known as Tamim Dawri alias Abdullah Hassan alias Azizur Rahma alias Abdullah Al Jafri alias Amir Hamza.

He is the son of Chaitanya Kumar Mondol and Renuka Rani Mondol. Tamim met one Tanvir Kabir when he joined Tabligh Jamaat after converting to Islam and started living with him.

Meanwhile, Tanvir’s father Humayun Kabir Sarker adopted Tamim as his son. Tamim joined Shahjalal Science and Technology University (SUST) in 2005 and shifted to Chittagong Marine Academy after studying at SUST for seven to eight months.

He completed his studies in 2007 and worked as an engineer at various ships including Bangladesh Shipping Corporation’s Bangla Kakli from 2010 to 2014.

One of Tamim’s academic juniors Abu Bakkar worked in the same ship as him. Tamim sailed to Pakistan on Bangla Kakli in 2013 during the Arab spring where Abu Bakkar and he talked about jihad.

Abu Bakkar introduced Tamim Dawri to New JMB military commander Tamim Ahmed Chowdhury in December, 2013. They planned to conduct subversive activities in the water route when Tamim visited Tamim Dawri at Bangla Dut ship in 2014. Tamim Chowdhury suggested a lot of youths working in the sector to join militancy and also made fake passports for them.

The duo held a couple of meetings in Dhaka in 2015. He joined Bashundhara Ship 4 in 2016 and later left for hijrah this year.

He was arrested with two others from a bus in Savar on April 27. RAB nabbed them before they could execute their plans of subversive activities in Dhaka.

Regarding the matter, CTTC unit chief Monirul Islam told the media that these youths had been misled because of wrong explanation of the Qur’an and the hadiths.

He said: “They are being lured to militancy by saying that they can go to heaven directly by choosing this path.” www.dhakatribune.com/bangladesh/crime/2017/04/30/converted-youths-became-militants/

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