Sri Lanka Attacks

Riyas Aboobacker was arrested after he disclosed that he has been following speeches and videos of Hashim, who is believed to have masterminded the Easter Sunday blasts in Sri Lanka.

Asianet News

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Monday arrested an Islamic State sympathiser and follower of alleged Sri Lanka bombings mastermind Zahran Hashim.
Riyas Aboobacker was arrested from Kerala after he disclosed to NIA investigators that he has been following speeches and videos of Hashim, a radical Tamil-speaking cleric who is believed to have masterminded the Easter Sunday bombings in Sri Lanka, which left 253 people dead and over 500 injured.
The 29-year-old informed the NIA officials that he has been following Hashim for more than a year and has also followed the speeches of Zakir Naik, an absconding Indian Islamic preacher and founder of the Islamic Research Foundation.
Aboobacker admitted that he wanted to carry out a suicide attack in Kerala. He was being questioned by the NIA since Sunday when the agency unearthed the Kasaragod module of the terrorist outfit in Kerala during multiple raids at the house of three suspects.
Aboobacker alias Abu Dujana, a resident of Palakkad in Kerala, has been arrested on charges of conspiring to commit a terrorist act, an NIA statement said.
The suspect, NIA said, revealed during his interrogation that he had been in online contact with an absconding suspect Abdul Rashid Abdulla for a long time and has been following his audio clips, including the clip which he had circulated in the social media instigating others to carry out terror attacks in India.
Aboobacker revealed that he was also having online chat with Abdul Khayoom, a suspect in Valapattanam Islamic State case, who was believed to be in Syria, said the anti-terror agency.
The NIA had earlier received inputs that a group of four persons was in contact with some accused identified as Abdul Rashid, Ashfaq Majeed and Abdul Khayoom who had already migrated to Afghanistan and Syria.
After verification, NIA carried out searches at three places (two in Kasaragod and one in Palakkad district) on Sunday.
The agency said three group members have been interrogated for their Islamic State links and their plans and that this case was registered in July 2016 following the disappearance of 15 youths from Kasaragod and their subsequent migration to the Islamic State (14 persons went to Afghanistan and one person to Syria).
Aboobacker will be produced before a special NIA court in Kochi on Tuesday, the agency said.
With IANS inputs.