After the National Investigation Agency (NIA) arrested Abdul Momin Mondal, a suspected al-Qaeda conspirator, from West Bengal’s Murshidabad, his family had claimed his innocence.

Mondal’s family has said the central agency did not find any weapon or objectionable material from him, yet decided to arrest him on Sunday night. However, NIA has informed that they recovered several items relating to terrorist activities from him.

ETV Bharat West Bengal quoted Mondal’s elder sister as saying, “He has worked very hard to build our house. I had lent him money as well. But they (NIA officers) are saying that he built the house after earning through terrorist activities. We will not accept this. They could not recover any weapon. Why did they arrest him then?”

Mondal, who was working as a teacher in Raipur Darur Huda Islamia Madrassa in Murshidabad, was found to have links with the nine suspected al-Qaeda terrorists, who were arrested in September.

Among the nine arrested, eight were from Murshidabad and one was from Kerala. NIA found Mondal to be involved in a series of conspiratorial meetings convened by the members of the al-Qaeda module, PTI reported.

The 32-year-old madrassa teacher was also trying to recruit new members for the group and was raising funds for furthering its terrorist activities, an NIA spokesperson said.

Mondal, who had reportedly come under the NIA scanner after making “anti-national” comments on WhatsApp, was taken to New Delhi after the Murshidabad district court granted his transit remand.

On September 11, a case was registered pertaining to anti-national activities by a group of 10 Jihadi terrorists inspired by globally proscribed terrorist organisation al-Qaeda, the NIA official said.

After the arrests in September, NIA had said that all of them were radicalised by Pakistan-based al-Qaeda. During the arrest, the agency had seized digital devices, documents, jihadi literature, sharp weapons, country-made firearms, a locally fabricated body armour, articles and literature used for making home-made explosive devices.

In its official statement, NIA had further claimed that all the suspected terrorists were motivated to undertake several attacks throughout the country, including in the Delhi National Capital Region (NCR). 

With PTI inputs