Kashmir separatist leader NIA
In 2017, the NIA registered a case against 12 people for alleged conspiracy to raise and collect funds for causing disruption | File photo for representation

NIA raids 60 locations in Karnataka, Kerala, TN targeting ISIS sympathisers

According to the official spokesperson, on Wednesday, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) carried out searches in Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and Karnataka in relation to two incidents of explosions that occurred in Coimbatore and Mangaluru.

The searches were carried out at 40 places — 32 in connection with the Coimbatore car bomb blast and eight linked to the Mangaluru blast. One of the cases relates to a bomb blast in a car laden with explosives in front of Kottai Eswaran Temple in Coimbatore district in Tamil Nadu.

The accused, Jamesha Mubeen, after swearing “Bayath” (allegiance) to the ISIS, was planning to carry out a suicide attack on October 23 last year and cause extensive damage to the temple complex with the intention to strike terror among a section of the society, the agency spokesperson said.

The second case relates to a pressure cooker bomb blast that took place in a moving auto-rickshaw in Mangaluru City in Karnataka on November 19 last year. The blast occurred when the accused was carrying the improvised explosive device for planting it in a public place.

The searches led to the seizure of a large number of digital devices and Rs 4 lakh in cash, the spokesperson said, adding further investigations in these two cases are on.

Also Read: NIA raids 56 centres linked to PFI across Kerala

The searches linked to the Coimbatore case were carried out in 32 places in Tamil Nadu and Kerala — Coimbatore (14), Trichy (1), Nilgiris (2), Tirunelveli (3), Tuticorin (1), Chennai (3), Thiruvannamalai (2), Dindigul (1), Mayiladuthurai (1), Krishnagiri (1), Kanyakumari (1), Tenkasi (1) and Ernakulam (1).

The agency carried out searches in eight places in connection with the Mangaluru case — Tiruppur (2) and Coimbatore (1) of Tamil Nadu, Ernakulam (4) of Kerala, and Mysuru (1) of Karnataka.

The searches in Tamil Nadu began by 5 AM amid local police security and went on for several hours. The locations searched include the residence of a software engineer in Tiruchirapalli and the house of a father and son duo Mayiladuthurai who work as car drivers in Muscat.

Also Watch: Coimbatore car blast : NIA raids 45 locations across Tamil Nadu

In Tirunelveli district, Aadhar card, SIM and a mobile phone were seized following searches. In Tenkasi, the house of a woman who was in touch over phone with some suspects in the Coimbatore case was searched.

In Chennai, sleuths arrived at the house of a man that had been searched earlier too in connection with the Coimbatore blast.

Following searches, he told reporters that there was no need for him to hide, delete messages on his phone or change the device since he has no ties with anyone who are on the NIA’s radar.

(With agency inputs)

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