NIA files second charge sheet in 2022 Coimbatore blast case

The NIA on Friday filed a fresh charge sheet against five persons in connection with the Coimbatore car bomb blast in October 2022, and said the prime accused was “reportedly inspired by the hardcore ISIS ideology” to carry out this terrorist attack.

The agency had charge-sheeted six people in this case in April.

The case pertains to an explosion that took place on October 23 outside an ancient temple in Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu.

A vehicle-borne improvised explosives device had blown up in front of the temple.

The prime accused who drove the vehicle, Jamesha Mubeen, was killed in the blast, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) said.

Mubeen, the NIA said in a statement, was “reportedly inspired by hardcore ISIS ideology to commit this horrendous act of terror.”

The five men charge-sheeted on Friday, under various sections of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA) and the Explosive Substances Act, are Umar Faaruq, Firose Khan, Mohamed Thoufeeq, Sheikh Hidayatullah and Sanofar Ali.

Mohammed Asarutheen, Mohammed Thalha, Firos, Mohammed Riyas, Navas and Afsar Khan were charge-sheeted in the complaint filed on April 20.

The NIA probe found that “Mubeen, along with Mohammed Asarutheen, Umar Faaruq, Sheikh Hidayathullah and Sanofer Ali, had conspired to carry out a series of suicidal terror attacks in Coimbatore city.”

“The attack was intended to wreak revenge on the kafirs (non-believers), as stated in one of the self-made confessional videos, made a few days before the intended attack,” the NIA said.

Two accused, Azharudeen and Afsar, helped Jamesha Mubeen procure, mix and prime the explosives, while Talha had provided the car that was used in the crime, it said.

Three accused, Ferose, Riyaz and Nawas, had helped Jamesha load various building blocks of the improvised explosive device (IED), including drums and gas cylinders into the car, the agency said.

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The NIA alleged that the “conspiracy” was hatched in the forest of Sathyamangalam in Erode district of Tamil Nadu, where Umar Faaruq was elected as the “amir” (commander of army) to lead the execution of the attack.

“He, in turn, assigned various roles to the other accused persons. The conspirators had planned to use the remaining explosives for a series of terror attacks.”

“Mohammed Thoufeeq was in possession of radical books and a notepad handed over by Jamesha Mubeen containing designs to make IEDs,” the agency said.

“Umar Faaruq and Jamesha Mubeen had also collected funds for the commission of the terror act, while the accused Sanofer Ali had also supported Jamesha Mubeen financially for the same,” it said.

Firose Khan, it said, had abetted the terror attack by providing logistical support.

The larger aim of the conspiracy was to wage war against the government of India by targeting its various branches such as general administration, police and the judiciary, the NIA said.

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