Ahmedabad Crime Branch nabs fundraiser of Akshardham terror attack

Ahmedabad, Nov 26 (IANS) The Ahmedabad Crime Branch police on November 26 arrested here an alleged accomplice of the terrorists who attacked the Akshardham temple in Gujarat’s capital Gandhinagar in 2002, killing 31 people.
Acting on a tip-off, the police kept a watch at the Ahmedabad airport and arrested Mohammad Farooq Shaikh as soon as he landed from Riyadh in Saudi Arabia. The police said he had come to meet his family members.
According to the Crime Branch, Farooq Shaikh, among others, organized funds for the terror attack on September 24, 2002, by two Pakistan-based terrorists. As many as 31 visitors to the temple complex were killed and scores of others injured in the indiscriminate firing and grenade blasts.
The assailants were later killed by commandos in a night-long operation to flush out the terrorists hiding in the huge temple.
Farooq Shaikh used to live in the minority-dominated Juhapura locality in Ahmedabad and was roped in by some pro-Pakistani elements to arrange funds for the terror attack to take revenge on the killing of the Muslims in the communal riots in the state in February-March same year.
He was believed to have escaped to the United Arab Emirates soon after the terror attack and this was the first time he was coming to visit his family, the Crime Branch said.

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