The National Investigation Agency NIA had been looking for Mohammad Shariq for at least two months. He has fallen into the lap of NIA as a result of the Mangaluru blast on November 19. The bomb blast had taken place in an Autorickshaw.
Curiously, police had arrested Shariq for writing hateful and anti-Hindu graffiti on the walls of Mangaluru. He had allegedly committed this hate-crime in November 2020. Police had arrested him for writing ‘Gustakh e rasool ki ek saja sar tan se juda’. As reported, he had written it on the wall of police outpost along with his accomplice Maaz Muneer Ahmed.
Another such hate crime for which police arrested him was writing hateful content on another wall. It read ‘Don’t force us to invite Lashkar Taiba and Taliban to deal with Sanghis and Mavedis’. The terms ‘Sanghis’ and Manvedis’ are used as euphemisms for Hindus.
Was out on bail
Police had booked Mohammad Shariq and his accomplice Maaz Muneer Ahmed under section 153A and later UAPA. Since they had defaced walls, police also invoked Sections 3 and 5 of the Karnataka Open Place (Prevention of Disfigurement) Act. Court granted him bail on technical grounds.
However, Karnataka Police later again arrested Maaz Muneer Ahmed. This time he had another accomplice, Mohammad Yasin. The charges were far more serious. According to Shivamogga police, the cops arrested the duo for having terror links and for possessing explosives. This time the intention was not just defacement of property but damaging public property and bomb blast.
The third accomplice was Mohammad Shariq. As per police, they had links with ISIS. Earlier this month, ADGP Alok Kumar had expressed concern that Shariq might escape to a foreign country. But, Saturday’s explosion has brought him into the net of police.
As per police, the 24 years old Shariq is an associate of a prominent member of Al Hind. NIA had busted this Islamic terrorist module based in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
Bomb went off accidentally?
On Saturday, Shariq came back to Mangaluru. He was using a fake Aadhar card and tried to execute his plan, as per sources. He carried a pressure cooker rigged with an IED from Mysuru to Mangaluru. Police suspect that the bomb went off accidentally. Mohammad has suffered 40% burns due to the ensuing fire.
The FSL team recovered materials used to make explosives such as gelatin powder, circuit board, small bolts, batteries, mobile, wood power, aluminum multi meters, wires, mixture jars, pressure cooker, etc.
The agencies suspect that this blast may have links to the Coimbatore bomb blast that occurred last month.