Yasin Bhatkal – Engineer turned terror mastermind
Yasin Bhatkal, who was arrested in Nepal on Thursday following a joint operation by the NIA and the Karnataka Special Task Force, is the founder of terrorist outfit Indian Mujahideen which is involved in several blasts in the country.
Zee Media Bureau/Ritesh K Srivastava
New Delhi: On the run for five years, the security agencies finally managed to nab Yasin Bhatkal, a dreaded terrorist and co-founder of terror-outfit Indian Mujahideen (IM) from the Indo-Nepal border in north Bihar late on Wednesday.
Bhatkal is wanted by National Investigation Agency (NIA) in several cases of terror activities and waging war against the country.
NIA, which has registered cases under various sections of Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act against him, had also announced a reward of Rs 10 lakh for his capture.
A non-bailable warrant was issued against Bhatkal, who hails from Bhatkal in Karnataka.
Bhatkal is wanted in cases of terror attacks in Ahmedabad, Surat, Bangalore, Pune, Delhi and Hyderabad.
Yasin, who co-founded IM in 2008 along with his cousin Riaz, is also wanted in the German Bakery bomb blast in Pune on February 13, 2010, that left 17 people dead.
This was the first major act of terrorism post the Mumbai terror attacks. He is also wanted in the blast outside the Delhi High Court on September 7, 2011 in which 12 people were killed.
His real name is Syed Ahmed Zarar Siddibappa and he is an engineering graduate from Bhatkal in Karnataka.
The IM was designated a terrorist group by the government under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act in June, 2010.
Bhatkal was arrested once but jumped bail. He also came close to being nabbed on a couple of occasions in the past but managed to escape each time.
Bhatkal had managed to evade arrest in 2008 since the West Bengal Police had no relevant details about the man, who is responsible for hundreds of deaths in India.
He also managed to slip just hours before a team of officers from the Intelligence Bureau, the Delhi Police and the Chennai Police raided the house of 19-year-old Abdul Rehman at Selaiyur in Chennai in November 2011.
Yasin used to work in close coordination with his brothers Riyaz and Iqbal Bhatkal.
Riyaz is the founder member of the IM and is responsible for setting up the outfit. He now lives in Karachi in Pakistan and is under the protection of the intelligence agencies over there. He has given the Indian agencies many a slip before he moved into Pakistan.
Iqbal Bhatkal is the brother of Riyaz and also part of the founding team of the IM. A resident of Bhatkal in Karnataka, he was primarily in-charge of setting up modules in Gujarat. Today he is with his brother in Karachi.
Yasin Bhatkal has gained cult status in the terror network largely because of the failure of security agencies to nab him.