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Indian Mujahideen Strikes For First Time After June Ban

PTI 07 Dec 2010, 22:04:21 IST
New Delhi, Dec 7: It is the Indian Mujahideen again in the news with the blast in Varanasi, the first time after it was banned and designated as a terror outfit by the Union Government in June this year.

The Indian Mujahideen's hand is suspected in over 10 serial blasts in Delhi and other parts of the country that claimed nearly 500 lives.

The IM is a shadow outfit of the banned SIMI and Pakistan-based Lashker-e-Taiba and is directly controlled by Pakistan's ISI, official sources say.

"An order has been issued adding Indian Mujahideen and all its formations and front organisations to the list of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967," a Home Ministry statement had said here while banning the group.

With its addition to the terror list, the number of such outfits has gone upto 35 which includes al-Qaeda, LTTE, Jaish-e-Mohammed, Hizbul Mujahideen, CPI-Maoist and ULFA.

The Indian Mujahideen is alleged to be involved in serial bomb blasts in Delhi, Uttar Pradesh, Bangalore and Mumbai and came under spotlight on February 23, 2005 when it carried out a blast in Varanasi leaving eight people injured.

The Indian Mujahideen has carried out over 10 blasts in various parts of the country killing nearly 500 people, a senior Home Ministry official said, adding the deadliest attack of the IM was in the pre-Diwali blasts in the national capital in 2005 in which 66 people were killed.

Amir Reza Khan was the founding member of the Indian Mujahideen, which was created by ISI ostensibly to spread terror through Indian front outfits. The group is at present headed by Iqbal Bhatkal, a resident of North Karnataka, the sources say. PTI