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Another ‘mastermind’ of Dhaka cafe attack arrested

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Dhaka: Bangladesh Police on Saturday claimed to have arrested Neo-JMB terrorist Jahangir Alam, one of the key figures behind the Gulshan café terror attack in 2016 in which over 20 people, mostly foreigners, were killed.

Dhaka Metropolitan Police’s (DMP) spokesperson Masudur Rahman said they arrested Alam, alias Rajib Gandhi, a Neo-Jama’atul Mujahideen leader, from Tangail, some 100 km from here, late on Friday.

The 35-year-old Alam’s arrest came about during a drive conducted by members of Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit of DMP, police said, bd24news reported.

He is a wanted criminal and an accused in 20 to 22 cases filed in connection with terrorist attacks, CTTC unit Chief Monirul Islam told The Daily Star.

Police earlier said the name ‘Rajib Gandhi’ surfaced during the July 1 Holey Artisan Bakery attack. Investigators said they came to know that he was the “commander” of Neo-JMB for the northern districts.

He was quite young when he joined the mainstream JMB, which carried out synchronised bomb attacks across Bangladesh in 2005.

Rajib had close connections with Tamim, the mastermind of the café siege, who was killed last year.

Rajib sent two militants from Bogra to take part in the Gulshan attack and another from Dinajpur for the Sholakia attack.

In September 2016, Islam told the media that Alam had personally trained them.

The police had earlier said they were on the trail of ‘Rajib Gandhi’ and Basaruzzaman alias Chocolate, after recent raids that led to the deaths of terrorists Tamim Chowdhury, former Bangladesh Army major Jahidul Islam, Tanvir Qaderi and Nurul Islam Marzan.

On July 1, 2016, five militants took hostages and opened fire on the Holey Artisan Bakery in Gulshan, killing over 20 persons, mostly foreigners, including 19-year-old Indian Tarishi Jain.

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