Transport Officer Summoned For Questioning Over Alleged Lashkar Links


New Delhi: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has summoned a Bihar District Transport Officer for alleged links with suspected Lashkar-e-Taiba operative Abdul Naeem Shaikh who was arrested from Uttar Pradesh last month, an official said.

Abdul Sheikh, alias Nomi, was arrested by the NIA on November 28 from Charbagh bus stand in Lucknow in a joint operation with the Uttar Prades Police’s Anti-Terrorist Squad.

An NIA official, on the condition of anonymity, told news agency IANS that they have summoned a DTO officer, identified as Diwakar Jha, posted in Bihar’s Buxar district, for questioning over his alleged links with Sheikh.

According to the NIA official, Jha had inaugurated Sheikh’s coaching centre in Bihar’s Gopalganj district in 2015, when he was posted there. The official said the anti-terror probe agency has recovered some pictures of Jha with Sheikh.

The suspected LeT operative was wanted by security agencies in various cases, including the Mumbai train attacks of 2006-2007.

Sheikh, who is said to have done a reconnaissance of army and power installations in Jammu and Kashmir, was caught after he applied for a passport under a fictitious name.

The NIA official said that security agencies stumbled upon a lead to Sheikh after a man complained that his address was being used by the LeT operative for his passport.

Sheikh was hiding in Bihar’s Gopalganj district by changing his name after escaping from the custody of central agencies in August 2014.

He was earlier nabbed by security agencies at that time and was under trial. In August 2014, he managed to give the slip to security agencies and escaped when he was being taken from Dum Dum Central jail (Kolkata) to Mumbai to appear in court. He fled while the train was passing through the thick forests of Chhattisgarh.

After fleeing from custody, Sheikh established a new sleeper cell under instruction from his LeT handler Amjad, the official said.