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Bhatkal & Co had Arabic names in mind for IM

Riyaz Bhatkal and his associates were considering Arabic words ‘Furqan’ and ‘Ashaab’ to name their terror outfit...

Riyaz Bhatkal and his associates were considering Arabic words ‘Furqan’ and ‘Ashaab’ to name their terror outfit before finally settling on ‘Indian Mujahideen’ (IM),top security sources told The Indian Express on Thursday.

While IM members had been active since mid-2005,it was only before the Jaipur blasts on May 13,2008 that they felt the need to name their outfit and claim responsibility for blasts in different parts of the country.

According to the confessional statement given by software engineer and alleged head of the IM’s media-wing Mansoor Peerbhoy,group founder Bhatkal and his brother Iqbal wanted to send out e-mails claiming responsibility for the Jaipur,Bangalore,Ahmedabad and Delhi blasts under a specific name so that Pakistan-based terror groups such as the Lashkar-e-Toiba and other jehadi groups would not be able to take credit for their work.

Shortly before the Jaipur blasts,some key IM members met at the Ashoka Mews apartment in Pune to discuss names for their outfit.

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“The meeting was attended by Bhatkal,his brother Iqbal,Peerbhoy,Asif Bashiruddin Shaikh and Mubin Kadar Shaikh. They first came up with the name ‘Furqan’ which means the one who differentiates between ‘haq’ meaning right and ‘batil’ meaning wrong. They soon decided that the significance of the name would be lost on most people,and started thinking of another name,” said a senior police official who did not wish to be named.

Interestingly,a splinter group of the Jaish-e-Mohammed called Jamaat-ul-Furqan was floated in 2003 by Pakistan-based Maulana Abdul Jabbar alias Maulana Umer Farooq who was detained in connection with the December 2003 assassination attempts on then Pakistan president Pervez Musharraf.

“The second name suggested was Isaba,which means Prophet Mohammed’s followers. They soon felt that even this name would be too complicated for people to understand,and therefore they finally decided on Indian Mujahideen,” the officer added.

First published on: 17-04-2009 at 11:55:46 pm
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