Highlights

  • All three reported handlers of Shariq hail from Shivamogga
  • Musabir Hussain, Abdul Matheen Taha and Arafath Ali are wanted in terror cases
  • Shariq will be booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act

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Karnataka Police on Monday named 3 terror accused as possible handlers and financers of the Mangaluru auto blast suspect. 

Karnataka Police on Monday identified three individuals as possible handlers and financers of 24-year-old Shariq, accused in the Mangaluru auto blast case.

ADGP (Law and Order) Alok Kumar named - Musabir Hussain, Abdul Matheen Taha and Arafath Ali as Shariq's possible handlers.

While Shariq will be booked under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, his alleged handlers are accused in different terror cases. Arafath Ali is a co-accused with Shariq in a case involving painting of an objectionable graffiti in Mangaluru in 2020.

Ali is still absconding in the graffiti case, says the police and acording to them, is in Dubai. Ali was Shariq's immediate handler, Karnataka ADGP said.

Above Arafath Ali was Abdul Matheen Taha, against whom NIA has announced a reward of Rs 5 lakh, named as Shariq's main handler by the police. Musabir Hussain and Taha are accused in a case filed in 2020 in Bengaluru by local cops for the creation of an ISIS-insipired terror gang with members from Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Karnataka.

All three reported handlers of Shariq hail from Shivamogga and are absconding in terror cases.

Shariq, who suffered burns in the low-intensity blast, was reportedly influenced and inspired by a terrorist organisation with global presence, Kumar said on Monday.

Also Watch| Mangaluru autorickshaw blast: Accused 'inspired' by global terror outfit, say police

The state police is probing the funding received by Shariq as well as motivation that pushed him into making an IED and bringing it to Mangaluru from Myusuru for the alleged terror attack on November 19.

“We do not know where he was taking the device and what he was planning since he is still hospitalised. He visited the city for a suspected recce on November 10 and went to a few crowded places,” ADGP Alok Kumar said. “There were also one or two local supporters involved and we are working on it,” he said.

The cops have also found a picture on Shariq's mobile phone where he is seen posing like an Islamic State (IS) cardre with the suspected pressure cooker IED that exploded in the auto in Mangaluru.

A police raid on the Mysuru house, where Sharik reportedly made the IED between September 20 and November 19, uncovered a cache of explosives, including over 150 match-boxes.

Other materials found at the Mysuru rented house were 9 volt batteries, sizable quantities of phosphorus and sulphur, police said.

On November 19, the blast occurred in an autorickshaw in front of Kankanadi police station in Mangaluru.

The police said it was a terror incident as Shariq was in the autorickshaw with a pressure cooker fitted with detonator, wires and batteries.

with PTI inputs

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