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Dhaka Tribune February 05, 2017

24 ?Islami Samaj’ men held while ?plotting sabotage’

By FM Mizanur Rahaman, Chittagong

Police claimed to have detained twenty-four suspected members of a blacklisted Islamist group called Islami Samaj while allegedly holding a clandestine meeting in Chittagong.

Members of special task group and detective branch (DB) of Chittagong Metropolitan Police (CMP) booked them raiding a house in the premier port city’s Nayabazar area on Friday night.

The arrestees are – Md Ruhul Amin,45, Md Yusuf Ali, 46, Amir Hossen, 50, Jamal Uddin, 42, Abu Hanif Hariz, 53, Md Rafiqul Islam alias Rubel, 27, Alamgir Hossen, 35, Didar Hossen, 35, Md Anwar,44, Md Shah Alam, 40, Md Rabiul Hossen, 37, Md Towhidul Islam, 22, Md Anwar Hossen, 42, Md Abdul Wahab, 54, Md Abdur Rab, 40, Md Sadeq, 42, Md Abu Bakkar Kamal, 50 Md Abdur Kader, 27, Md Akbar Hossen, 42, Md Saiful Islam, 26, Md Ibrahim Khalil, 26, Md Mobarak Ali, 45, Md Abdul Hakim, 45 and Md Robiul , 28.

Ruhul and Yusuf are the top leaders of the group’s of Chittagong region and Tongi district units, police said, adding, that Yousuf was earlier arrested in Jamalpur for being in touch with banned Islamist militant outfit Jama’atul Mujahedeen Bangladesh (JMB) in 2008.

The police also seized some organisational documents and leaflets of the group from the spot of the raid.

The organisation doesn’t believe in the country’s existing democratic system and laws since it is aiming to establish Khelafat (caliphate), according to police.

The information surfaced in a press briefing organised by the CMP at its headquarters yesterday.

Paritosh Ghosh, deputy commissioner of DB at the CMP, then told reporters that the outfit members had been working for a Khelafat state in the country like many other militant groups.

The detainees have lower educational and social background, as he said, while their target group is underprivileged and low-income people since the latter can easily be redicalised through misconception of Islam.

Claiming that the twenty-four men were plotting sabotage at the meeting, the police official, however, could not confirm which militant organisation Islami Samaj is linked to.

Police said they were verifying the primary information divulged especially by the Ruhul and Yusuf.

A case was later filed under Special Powers Act with Pahartali police station in this connection.

Details on the outfit:

According to GlobalSecurity.org, a military issues think tank, Islami Samaj is a break away faction of Jamaat-e-Islami and was established on May 17, 1997 by the party founder ameer Mufti Abdul Zabbar who in 1983 formed a dissident group of Jamaat following his disagreement with Jamaat leader Golam Azam.

The present ameer of the organisation is Syed Humayun Kabir, a former member Islami Chhatra Shibir, Jamaat’s student front.

The organisation’s objective is to establish Islamic rule in the country as it opposes democracy terming it a man-made system and contradictory to the rule of Islam.

Headquartered in Comilla, the Islamist group was blacklisted back in 2007 along with six other like-minded organisations.

From tailor to top leader:

Hailing from Chandpur, Yusuf was a tailor before he joined the group, police said.

CMP DB’s Additional Deputy Commissioner Humayun Kabir told the Dhaka Tribune that he (Yusuf) left his profession as a tailor and started to work for the platform and stay at its Tongi office to look after organisational activities.

Upon his connection with JMB, Yusuf was arrested in 2008 and came out of jail two months later, finally joining Islami Samaj, stated the other police official, Paritosh.

Copyright 2017, Dhaka Tribune