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Three Al-Qaeda terrorists arrested in Lucknow belong to third major terror module within a year

Three Al-Qaeda terrorists arrested in Lucknow belong to third major terror module within a year

The National Investigation Agency said that these terrorists were planning attacks in several places in the country, including National Capital Region (NCR).

The arrest of three people linked to terror group Al-Qaeda in Lucknow on Sunday is the busting of third major terror module within a year in the country. 

The investigators further said that these men were radicalised by Al-Qaeda terrorists on social media and were motivated to undertake attacks at multiple locations in India.

In the Lucknow arrest too, the Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) recovered incriminating material, including two semi-prepared IED-based pressure cooker bombs and explosive materials.

The arrested operatives - Minhaz Ahmed (30) and Maseeruddin (50) - were living in Lucknow and associated with Al Qaeda-linked Ansar Ghazwatul Hind. In fact, Ahmed's father has been running amotor workshop in Lucknow's Dubagga area.

These men were in touch with their handler Umar Halmandi, the head of the Uttar Pradesh module of Al-Qaeda, according to Uttar Pradesh Police. "They were planning to unleash terror activities before August 15 (Independence Day) in different cities of the state, including Lucknow," said Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar. The men were planning explosions, including using human bombs, Kumar added.

The Uttar Pradesh ATS, meanwhile, is looking for two associates of Ahmed and Maseeruddin, who escaped just before the two were arrested on Sunday.

The Bihar Police on Sunday issued an alert in all districts and railway stations after the arrest of two Al-Qaeda-linked terrorists in Lucknow.

In September last year, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) arrested nine Al-Qaeda terrorists in West Bengal and Kerala. The terror operatives were arrested from Ernakulam in Kerala and Murshidabad in West Bengal. The NIA said that their targets included Kochi naval base and shipyard.

The agency had seized weapons and bomb-making material from the men. The six from Murshidabad and three from Ernakulam were planning lone wolf attacks, the NIA said.