Demolished madrasas were Al-Qaeda offices, says Assam CM

7 September, 2022 | Vaishali Sharma

Assam CM Headlines

A day after demolishing madrasas in Assam’s Goalpara district, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma declared on Wednesday that all of the structures razed were not madrasas but Al-Qaeda offices...

A day after demolishing madrasas in Assam’s Goalpara district, Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma declared on Wednesday that all of the structures razed were not madrasas but Al-Qaeda offices.

Speaking to mediapersons here, Sarma said, “All demolished madrasas were not madrasas but Al Qaeda offices. We demolished 2-3 and now the public is coming to demolish others. The Muslim community is coming to demolish, saying that they do not want a madrasa where the work of Al-Qaeda is done. That changes madrasa’s character.” The Chief Minister’s statement came after local residents of Pakhuria Char in Assam’s Goalpara district demolished a madrasa on Tuesday after a cleric associated with it was held for alleged anti-national activities.

“Locals took the initiative to demolish a madrassa. The government was not involved in it. They were surprised that the jihadi who was arrested was a teacher in the madrassa. People have given a strong message that they do not support jihadi activities,” Goalpara Superintendent of Police VV Rakesh Reddy told ANI.

“Today, the locals of Darogar Alga, Pakhiura Char in Goalpara district voluntarily demolished the madrassa & the residence adjacent to the madrassa which was previously used by two suspected Bangladeshi nationals as a strong resentment towards the Jihadi activities,” said the Assam Police CPRO.

Four madrasas have been dismantled in the previous several weeks, with the first three being hauled down by government officials. On August 4, government officials demolished Madrasa Jamiul Huda Madrasa in Moirabari, Morigaon district.

Earlier on Saturday, Assam police detained two suspected terrorists belonging to the Al-Qaeda Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) and Ansarullah Bangla Team (ABT) terror organisations in the Goalpara district.

After being questioned by police for many hours, the arrested individuals were identified as Abdus Subhan, Imam of Tinkunia Shantipur Mosque under Mornoi police station, and Jalaluddin Sheikh, Imam of Tilapara Natun Mosque under Matia police station in Goalpara.

Goalpara SP VV Rakesh Reddy had said that both the aforesaid persons were arrested after they were grilled for hours.

“We have gotten input in July this year from arrested Abbas Ali who is also linked with Jihadi elements. During the interrogation, we found that they were directly connected with Barpeta and Morigaon modules of AQIS/ABT in Assam,” the SP had said.

“During the house searches of the accused persons, a number of incriminating material related to the Al-Qaeda, Jihadi elements, posters, books among other documents were seized along with the mobile phones, SIM cards and ID cards,” he had added.

The senior Assam cop further had said that they (accused) have also given logistic support to the Jihadi terrorists who came here from Bangladesh.

“The Bangladeshi nationals are absconding and the arrested terrorists had given shelter to the Bangladeshi terrorists in Goalpara. The arrested persons had organized one Dharma Sabha in December 2019 at Sundarpur Tilapara Madrassa under the Matia police station where many Bangladeshi nationals with linkages to AQIS were invited as guest speakers,” the police officer had said.

He had further disclosed that these arrested persons were involved in providing logistic support as well as sheltering the Bangladeshi nationals, who are currently absconding.

“They confessed being members of AQIS and recruited Ansars/Sleeper Cells in Goalpara and revealed direct funding and supports have come from the absconding Bangladeshi terrorists,” SP VV Rakesh Reddy had added.

Under sections 120(B), 121, 121 (A) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) RW and sections 18, 18 (B), 19, and 20 of the UA(P) Act, a new case has been recorded at Matia police station.

On July 28, 11 people were apprehended as part of a significant operation in Assam for alleged ties to global terror organisations such as AQIS and ABT.