The agency will also explore their links with the Islamic State, if any. (In photo) An RAB team outside the cafe in Gulshan. Photograph: (Getty)
The team questioned six Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh operatives, currently in NIA custody, to determine their role in July's cafe siege
Bangladesh’s elite anti-terror agency RAB arrived in India on Saturday to question Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) operatives that were arrested in India’s eastern state of West Bengal last month.
A team of two investigators reached the National Investigation Agency (NIA) office on Saturday morning to question the six JMB operatives. The arrests were made by the special task force of Kolkata police last month.
The team questioned them to determine if they were connected to the Dhaka cafe attack in July. The agency is also exploring their links with the Islamic State group, if any.
Currently, the six men are under NIA's custody. The agency is also examining their role in the Burdwan blast in West Bengal on October 2, 2014.
Of the six nabbed, three men are Bangladeshi nationals and the other three are Indian nationals of Bangladesh origin.
The arrested include JMB’s Bengal unit chief, Inam alias Anwar Hussain and Maulana Yusuf, chief motivator of JMB across Madrasas (Islamic educational institutions) in Bengal.
Sahidul Islam is the chief of the JMB in the north-eastern region. Muhammad Rubel alias Rafique is a resident of Jamalpur, Bangladesh and an expert in improvised explosive devices (IED). Mohammed Abul Kalam was also an expert in IEDs and used to assist another operative, Sahidul. Jabirul Islam alias Jahidul Islam is a Bangladeshi national, who had entered India without any valid passport or visa.
The six were suspected of running JMB sleeper cells, with active modules in eastern and north-eastern India. They were also believed to be plotting a terror attack in the eastern region of India.
Sources in the investigating agency highlight that these operatives were controlled and handled by Majlis-e-Shura's (JMB's think-tank, in charge of India) Salahuddin.