Coimbatore blast: Mohammed Thalka, one of 5 arrested is the nephew of Al-Ummah’s chief, the mastermind of 1998 serial blasts in the city

From Op India

On October 22, a 25-year-old man died in Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu, after an LPG cylinder in a car burst in the communally sensitive Kottaimedu district. The deceased in the Coimbatore blast was identified as Jamesha Mubin, a resident of Kottaipudur, near GM Nagar in Ukkadam.

There was an explosion at about 4 am in a Maruti car just opposite the Kottai Eswaran temple in the Ukkadam area of Coimbatore. Two gas cylinders, marbles, and nails were found.

The vehicle, a Maruti 800 hatchback, was shattered into pieces as a result of the bomb blast. Police also collected an unexploded LPG cylinder, steel balls, glass pebbles, and aluminum and iron nails from the scene. While alleged connections were reported between the recent cylinder blast and the 2019 Easter attacks in Sri Lanka, reports have emerged stating that the Tamil Nadu Police also found a link to the 1998 serial blasts in Coimbatore during the investigation.

After the recent cylinder attack, while one police team conducted searches at Mubin’s residence, another team was engaged in raiding  the premises of Islamic terrorists associated with Al-Ummah, the terrorist organization responsible for the Coimbatore serial blasts in 1998. The Police also raided the house of Al-Ummah chief Syed Ahmed Basha’s brother, Nawab Khan.

Nawab Khan is currently imprisoned for his involvement in the terror organization that plotted the 1998 serial explosions. These explosions killed over 60 individuals and injured approximately 220 others. Reports mention that the police officers also interrogated Nawab Khan’s son, Mohammed Thalka or Dalqa, who is now recognized to be one of the 5 offenders charged under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act.

The Police also investigated Mubin’s phone and checked his data to discover that before his death, the deceased had posted a WhatsApp story to apologize for his acts. “If the news of my death reaches you, forgive my mistakes. Hide my shortcomings. Participate in my Janasa. Pray for me” . . . the message posted by Mubin was custom-made and designed probably having connection with the ‘KhilafahGFX’ Facebook page.

The Facebook page named ‘KhilafahGFX’ was active by around 2019 and was known to be propagating the ideology of ISIS. The page was maintained by Mohammed Azharuddin who was arrested by the NIA amid investigations surrounding the Kasargod – ISIS breakthrough in Kerala. He was also connected on Facebook with Lankan suicide bomber Zahran Hashim, who was the mastermind of the Easter bombings that happened in Sri Lanka in the year 2019.

Authorities also discovered handwritten paper documents retrieved from Jamesha Mubin’s home detailing popular sites that they planned to recce or had done previously. The Racecourse, Victoria Hall, railway terminals, and other public  venues are some of them. Notably, the reports stated that one of the five detained in the case is believed to have paid a visit to Mohammed Azharuddin (of the KhilafahGFX) in Cochin jail with the now-deceased Mubin.

According to police officers, Mubin had made preparations for a blast earlier also, but the plan had been foiled. After the recent blasts, Tamil Nadu police arrested 5 persons identified as Nawab’s son Muhammed Dhalha and four others; Nawab Ismail, Firoz Ismail, Muhammed Riyaz and Muhammed Azaruddin.

I remember the 2019 bomb attacks in Sri Lanka; we posted reports here as the investigation proceeded. One of the bombers studied in the UK and may well have been influenced by Anjem Choudary.

I am not so familiar with the 1998 massacre in Coimbatore. But the newspaper recaps on the events here for readers too young or otherwise unfamiliar with it. 

A series of devastating bomb blasts rocked Coimbatore on 14 February 1998 which killed around 60 people and nearly killed LK Advani, the then BJP president whose scheduled arrival was delayed as his flight was delayed by over 90 minutes. The bombs were concealed in cars, motorcycles, bicycles, side boxes of two-wheeler, denim and rexine bags, and fruit carts. Reports mention that the bombings were apparently in retaliation to the 1997 Coimbatore riots that happened during November and December in the year 1997. The terror plot was named ‘Operation Allahu Akbar’ and intended to kill Advani who was supposed to address an election meeting in the city that day. Seven human bombers with immediate package explosives fastened to their waists were ready to attack Advani. However, their preparations failed since they were unable to penetrate the police barrier and approach him. But the other explosives put across the city, in vehicles, motorcycles, tea cans, unsecured bags, and so on, were detonated, causing extensive mayhem and loss of life throughout Coimbatore.

The investigation later revealed that an Islamists terrorist organisation named Al-Ummah and it’s chief Syed Ahmed Basha were responsible for the attack.  . . Basha’s brother, Nawab Khan, was also sentenced to life in jail…Now, Khan’s son identified as Muhammed Dhalha has been arrested for his involvement in the recent cylinder blasts that happened in the city on October 22.

The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.


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