Kolkata: In yet another major breakthrough, NIA today arrested Amjad Sheikh, alleged to be a key member of Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) terror group, in connection with the Burdwan blast case.
Sheikh, alias Kajal, a resident of Birbhum district of West Bengal, is alleged to be the main person who used to procure material, meant for making improvised explosive devices, from open market.
NIA said 30-year-old Sheikh was instrumental in procuring chemicals and providing these to other co-conspirators for making Improvised Explosive Devices.
This is the second major breakthrough after the arrest of Bangladeshi national Sajid, suspected mastermind of the October 2 blast, by West Bengal police near Kolkata airport on Saturday. Sajid is alleged to be the Chief Commander of JMB.
According to official sources, Sheikh was working with a Kolkata-based medical firm which deals with manufacturing of various sterilisation products. He used his employment with the firm for procuring many restricted acids including ‘Picric acid' used for triggering an explosive device. NIA had announced a cash reward of Rs five lakh on information leading to Sheikh's arrest but later enhanced it to Rs 10 lakh.
Soon after the blasts, NIA had raided his Kolkata house and recovered receipts and vouchers related to purchase of chemicals which were used in making the IEDs.
Investigation found that Sheikh was part of the top brass of JMB in India and after October two blast, he took shelter in New Delhi on October 8 and from there moved to Basti in Uttar Pradesh where he was provided shelter for a few days by a policeman.
Ultimately, he went back to West Bengal from where he was arrested today, NIA said. Sheikh, who is the sixth person arrested in the case, is alleged to be closely associated with top JMB commanders who were running jihadi training modules in two madrasas of West Bengal.
On October two, the blast in a house at Khagragarh in Burdwan town had taken place in which one person Shakil Ahmed died on the spot and another person Sovan Mandal died in hospital. Both were suspected to have links with JMB.
Another person - Hasan Saheb - who was also injured in the blast, gave some information which led to the arrest of six people in Assam. However, only two women including the wife of one of the dead man, was useful in giving some sketchy information about the blast conspiracy.