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Archive for February, 2013

A 20-yr journey from shy student to terror kingpin

Posted by :) on February 26, 2013

Mateen Hafeez TNN 

Source – TOI

Mumbai: Seventeen-yearold Riyaz Shahbandri from Kurla was a shy civil engineering student at Nagpada’s Saboo Siddik polytechnic in 1993.Two decades later, he began making headlines as Riyaz Bhatkal, a suspected terrorist who has killed more people than don Dawood Ibrahim or hanged Pakistani terrorist Ajmal Kasab. Today he is the most dreaded face of the banned terror outfit, Indian Mujahideen. And his name has cropped up again in connection with the twin blasts in Hyderabad last week.
Born in 1976 as Riyaz Ismail Shahbandri in Bhatkal village of Karnataka, he came to be known as Roshan Jamal. He used to live in the 60-year-old two-storey Qadir Mansion in Kurla here. His father, Ismail, had shifted from Karnataka to Mumbai to set up a purse-making business. Despite obtaining a degree in civil engineering, Riyaz couldn’t find a job and began helping his father in his business.
In 2001, Riyaz fell in love with a girl from Kurla but his family disapproved the relationship and he was finally married to Nashua, the daughter of a Bhatkal-basedbusinessman. A few months before his wedding, he came in touch with the Kurla unit of Students’ Islamic Moment of India (SIMI) and became a member of the outfit.
It was already divided into two factions then — extremists and the moderates. Riyaz preferred to stay with the first group.
“In 2002, he allegedly gave supari to kill the owner of Deepak Farsan in Kurla. The shooters killed the owner’s bodyguard and Riyaz was never arrested,” said an investigating officer.A city crime branch official said, “A year later, he entered Pakistan illegally and got training in operating fire arms and assembling explosives at a Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) camp. In 2004, along with Atif Ameen (who was later killed in the Batla House encounter in 2008), Sadiq Asrar Shaikh (who is behind bars in Mumbai), Subhan Qureishi alias Tauqeer and Yasin Bhatkal (both absconding), he conducted his first training for Indian youths at Jolly Beach, a farm house in Bhatkal. Yasin, though hailing from Bhatkal, is not related to Riyaz. In 2005, the quintet executed their first terror blast at Sankat Mochan temple in Uttar Pradesh. ”
Oct 29, 2005 | Blasts at Paharganj, Sarojini Nagar and Gopal Nagar in Delhi, killed 62
March 7, 2006 | Sankat Mochan temple, Kashi Viswanath temple in Varanasi, killed 28
Nov 24, 2006 |
Faizabad, Lucknow and Varanasi courts
May 25, 2007 | Gorakhpur market Aug 25, 2007 | Lumbini Park and Gokul Chat in Hyderabad, killed 42
May 23, 2008 | Jaipur, killed 80 July 24, 2008 |
Bangalore, killed 02
July 25, 2008 |
Ahmedabad serial explosions, killed 56
July 26, 2008 | Surat (bombs defused)
Sept 13, 2008 | Delhi, killed 30 Feb 13, 2010 | Pune German Bakery blast, killed 17 July 13, 2011 | Mumbai triple blasts, killed 27 Aug 1, 2012 | Pune seria blasts
Total killed | 344

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18 dead, 52 hurt in bomb blasts in Indian city Posted: 21 February 2013 2243 hrs

Posted by :) on February 21, 2013

18 dead, 52 hurt in bomb blasts in Indian city
Posted: 21 February 2013 2243 hrs

Indian police and investigators are pictured at the site of a bomb blast at Dilshuk Nagar in Hyderabad on February 21, 2013. (AFP PHOTO/Noah SEELAM)
Click to enlarge Photos 1 of 1

Indian police and investigators are pictured at the site of a bomb blast at Dilshuk Nagar in Hyderabad on February 21, 2013. (AFP PHOTO/Noah SEELAM)

HYDERABAD, India: At least 18 people were killed and 52 wounded when bombs ripped through crowded areas of the Indian city of Hyderabad on Thursday in what the prime minister called a “dastardly act”.

The bombs targeted a mainly Hindu district in a suburb of the city, a hub of India’s information-technology industry which has a large Muslim population, and came with the nation on alert after the recent hanging of a Kashmiri separatist.

“We have 18 people dead,” a police officer who declined to be named told AFP.

Another senior police officer at the scene of one of the explosions, Amit Garg, put the number of wounded at 52.

Police said many of the injured were in critical condition in hospital.

“This is a dastardly act and the guilty will not go unpunished,” Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said of the attacks, the deadliest to hit India since 13 people died in a 2011 bombing outside the High Court in the capital New Delhi.

But Singh also appealed for “calm” in the aftermath of the Hyderabad blasts.

City police said there had been three explosions, but Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde said he could only confirm two.

“The two bombs were placed on two different bicycles and the distance between them was about 100 to 150 metres (yards),” Shinde told reporters in New Delhi.

He said Indian authorities had received “intelligence inputs in the (recent) days about the possibility of attacks and this information was shared with other states”.

Police said the blasts went off in quick succession.

Huge crowds gathered near the site of the explosions in the Hyderabad suburb of Dilsukh Nagar as police struggled to collect evidence.

“Ambulances have been rushed to the spot. Bodies have arrived and over 50 injured people have been brought to the spot,” Kailash Nath, an officer at the Osmania General Hospital, told AFP.

At the hospital, bloodied victims lay on stretchers as sobbing relatives pleaded for information about their loved ones.

Nath said that nine bodies had arrived at the hospital and 35 people were undergoing surgery.

The blasts came on the same day as India’s parliament opened for its key budget session, amid tensions following the hanging earlier this month of the Kashmiri separatist, Mohammed Afzal Guru.

The execution of Guru, who had been convicted of helping to plot a 2001 attack on the Indian parliament that left 10 people dead, had sparked protests in the disputed Muslim-majority region of Indian Kashmir.

India has made efforts to improve domestic security since the 2008 Mumbai attacks, in which 10 Islamist gunmen laid siege to the city, killing 166 people.

But experts say security forces still suffer from weak intelligence-gathering at the grass roots.

New Delhi blamed Pakistan-based militants for the Mumbai attacks, sending relations between the nuclear-armed neighbours into a deep freeze.

While Hindus form the majority of the population in Hyderabad, one of India’s largest and most historic cities, there is a large community of Muslims living in the old quarter.

– AFP/fa

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12 dead, 84 injured in blasts in Hyderabad

Posted by :) on February 21, 2013


source NDTV 
Daily News & Analysis  – ‎25 minutes ago‎
Terror struck Hyderabad killing 12 people and injuring 84 others tonight when two powerful near simultaneous blasts ripped through a crowded area close to a cluster of bus stands in Dilsukhnagar area.

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Vishrwaroopam – The Movie against Terrorism

Posted by :) on February 9, 2013


Vishwaroopam is a 2013 Indian Tamil spy thriller film written, directed and co-produced by Kamal Haasan who also enacts the lead role. The film has Pooja KumarRahul BoseAndrea Jeremiah and Jaideep Ahlawat in supporting roles. Produced simultaneously in Hindi asVishwaroop, the film features soundtrack composed by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, with lyrics by Vairamuthu and Haasan himself while Javed Akhtar translated them for the Hindi version.

Development of the project commenced after the release of Haasan’s Manmadhan Ambu (2010) when several of the crew were brought in from the United States to lend their technical expertise. The direction was taken over by Haasan from Selvaraghavan and reports indicating a comparison with several English films surfaced during the production. The first teaser was revealed in April 2012 and first theatrical trailer was revealed in June 2012. Vishwaroopam is the first Indian film, and second film worldwide after Red Tails (2012), to utilize the new Auro 3Dsound technology. The film is also the first of its kind to release via direct-broadcast satellite, also known as direct-to-home (DTH).

The film released worldwide, excluding Tamil Nadu, on 25 January 2013 while the Hindi version was released on 1 February 2013. Legal controversies regarding the film’s portrayal of Islamism arouse as several Muslim extremist groups protested the film’s release in Tamil Nadu, resulting in an official ban being imposed on the film in the state for 15 days by the Madras High Court. The ban resulted in similar decisions being made in Sri Lanka and Malaysia while release was delayed in the states of Andhra PradeshKerala and Karnataka. Despite the fragmented release, Vishwaroopam garnered generally favourable reviews from critics, most of whom had downplayed claims of the film being anti-Muslim. Heeding to the requests of Muslim extremist groups, scenes perceived as controversial were removed, allowing the film for release on 8 February 2013 in Tamil Nadu.


Theatrical poster
Directed by Kamal Haasan
Produced by


Written by Kamal Haasan
Atul Tiwari
Starring Kamal Haasan
Rahul Bose
Pooja Kumar
Andrea Jeremiah
Jaideep Ahlawat
Music by Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy
Cinematography Sanu Varghese
Editing by Mahesh Narayanan
Studio Raaj Kamal Films International
Distributed by PVP Cinema
Balaji Motion Pictures
Release date(s)
    • 25 January 2013(Worldwide except Tamil Nadu[3])
    • 1 February 2013 (Hindi version)
    • 7 February 2013 (Tamil Nadu[4])
Running time 147 minutes [5]
Country India
  • Tamil
  • Hindi
Budget INR95 crore (US$17.29 million)[6][7]


An Afghani Al-Qaeda Jihadi Omar (Rahul Bose), his accomplice Salim (Jaideep Ahlawat) and their international terror network, plots to attack New York with a “Cesium-bomb”. Vishwanath alias Wiz (Kamal Haasan) is a Kathak teacher who lives with his wife Nirupama (Pooja Kumar), a nuclear oncologist, in New York. Nirupama confides with a psychologist that it’s a marriage of convenience that provided her a safe haven for pursuing her Ph.D in the U.S. The age gap between them notwithstanding, she is put off by Vishwanath’s effeminate traits and is attracted to her boss, Deepak (Samrat Chakrabarti). Doubting whether her husband has secrets of his own, she hires a private investigator to trail him. She learns from the private investigator that Vishwanath is not a Hindu but a Muslim. In a sudden turn of events, the investigator gets killed by a member of the terrorist outfit led by Omar. A business card on his wallet gives away Nirupama and the terror group nabs the couple. The outfit operates from a warehouse on the outskirts of the city where the couple is being interrogated.

Vishwanath is involved in a fight with the terrorists, kills them at the warehouse and escapes with Nirupama. Omar and Vishwanath have a past, one that takes the story back by almost a decade, to the Al-Qaeda training camps in Afghanistan. What follows is a maze of events that go back and forth in time, unraveling a plot where in the terrorists are accumulating cesium from oncology devices to trigger a blast in New York.

Nirupama is stunned to discover the true identity of her husband Vishwanath, his uncle (Shekhar Kapur), American accomplice Dawkins (Miles Anderson) and the young dancer Ashmita (Andrea Jeremiah) at her husband’s dance school. Vishwanath is revealed to be Wisam Ahmad Kashmiri, a Muslim RAW agent who married Nirupama to investigate Deepak and his boss Omar in connection with a bomb blast in the heart of New York. His mission is to bust the ‘sleeper-cell’ of the Jihadis in the USA, which is planning to divert the attention through “capsules” capable of emitting mild nuclear radiation tied to pigeons in New York city while enabling Black alias Abbasi, a Nigerian suicide bomber to detonate the cesium bomb in the city.

Together, the team try to counter the plans of Omar and his group that could destroy the most of the New York city. In the ensuing events, Vishwanath is arrested by the FBI before being rescued by his uncle and Dawkins is murdered by Salim. Angered by this murder, Shekhar, Wisam’s boss, goes after Omar and Salim. Wisam along with the FBI, take down Abbasi and defuse the Ceasium bomb. Omar and Salim try to escape in a plane. Omar tries to activate bomb through his phone, but failed. He then called Abbasi, but call is attended by Wisam, who tells him that Abbasi is not alive, Omar is shocked to hear this but escapes with Salim in his plane. The film ends with Wisam indicating that he would now go after Omar alluding to Vishwaroopam 2.

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Afzal Guru hanged, buried in Tihar jail

Posted by :) on February 9, 2013

Source – PTI – Hindu News Paper

Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru. File photo
The HinduParliament attack convict Afzal Guru. File photo

Afzal Guru, convicted in the audacious attack on Parliament in 2001, was on Saturday hanged in Tihar Jail, in an operation shrouded in secrecy.

“Afzal Guru was hanged at 8 a.m.,” Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said shortly after the execution of the Jaish-e-Mohammad militant.

The mercy plea of the 43-year-old Guru, who was sentenced to death in 2002 by a special court and later upheld by the Supreme Court in 2004, was rejected by President Pranab Mukherjee a few days back, Rashtrapati Bhavan spokespeman Venu Rajamony said.

Reminiscent of the hanging of Mumbai attack convict Ajmal Kasab on November 21, 2012 Guru’s execution was kept under wraps in a top secret operation.

The family of Guru residing in Sopore in north Kashmir was informed about the decision of the government that his mercy petition has been rejected.

Guru was buried inside the prison complex soon after his execution.“He (Guru) was buried near jail number three,” a top Tihar Jail official told PTI.

Curfew was imposed in the Kashmir Valley in the wee hours of Saturday. Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, DGP Ashok Prasad and other senior officers flew from Jammu to Srinagar early this morning to keep a close watch on the law and order situation.

Pro-Pakistan separatist groups have given a call for a three-day shut down in the Valley.

Guru was convicted on charges conspiracy in the December 2001 attack on Parliament.

On December 13, 2001, five heavily-armed gunmen stormed the Parliament complex and opened indiscriminate fire, killing nine persons.

They included five Delhi Police personnel, a woman Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) official, two Parliament watch and ward staff and a gardener.

A journalist, who was injured, died later. All five terrorists were shot dead.

Also read: Editorial – Dec.18, 2002: The Parliament Attack Case

News Analysis: Few straight answers yet

Editorial – Dec 20, 2002: The death sentences

Editorial – Oct 31, 2003: Justice done

Editorial – Aug 06, 2005: Just acquittal, unjust suspicion

Editorial – Oct 09, 2006: Clemency — for the right reasons

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