|[Bangla Daily Star] Law enforcers believe outlawed which came to the limelight for its synchronised bombing across the country six years ago, has almost no strength left to carry out any subversive activities.|
The network of the outfit has totally collapsed with the arrests of its members of all tiers in massive crackdowns and its strength has almost waned, say officials of police and .
They however add JMB still has its roots, but there is hardly any chance of rearing their heads since they are under strong vigilance.
The Islamist outfit grasped the spotlight as a hardcore organization blasting 459 time bombs in 63 districts on August 17, 2005 that left two persons killed and 50 others injured.
In subsequent attacks, they also killed a number of people including two judges in Jhalakathi, sending a chill through the nation.
JMB founding ameer Sheikh Abdur Rahman along with his second-in-command Siddiqul Islam alias Bangla Bhai and four others was executed on March 30, 2007 in the judges killing case.
Since the attacks, 356 cases have been filed against around 800 JMB members and law enforcers have so far 656 of them. Of the cases, 142 cases were filed in connection with the August 17 blasts against 443 JMB leaders and operatives.
Among the 142 cases, the courts pronounced verdicts in 78 cases giving death sentence to 24 accused, life term imprisonment to 92 and imprisonment to 77 others on different terms. Besides, 171 of the accused were acquitted.
a High Court bench last month delivered a dissenting verdict in the Jhenidah blast case filed on August 17, 2005 in connection with the JMB bombing.
Two judges of the HC bench gave a split verdict. One judge acquitted all the 21 convicted by the trial court, saying charges brought against them were not found to be proved. On the other hand, the other judge acquitted seven accused and gave life imprisonment to the rest.
The HC bench delivered the split verdict after holding hearing on the death reference of the case and jail appeals filed by the accused against their conviction.
Law enforcers suspect Sohail Mahfuz is now the JMB's helmsman after the arrest of ex- chief Moulana Saidur Rahman in June last year in the city. Sohail is an arrogant person and is skilled in making powerful bombs including belt bombs.
"But he alone cannot do anything. To execute a plan, he needs a network in all tiers, but he does not have any," said Rab legal and media wing director Commander M Sohail.
The Rab director however said they are not dismissing any possibility and that is why they are always vigilant against JMB activities.
Lt Col Ziaul Ahsan, intelligence wing director of Rab, told The Daily Star yesterday the banned outfit has again started some activities in some northern districts including Rajshahi, Dinajpur and Thakurgaon.
the activities are limited to recruitment of members and fund collection, he added.
|JMB active despite arrest of top brass|
|[Bangla Daily Star] Law enforcers fear a backlash from Jama'atul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) despite detaining the top brass of the banned militant outfit in recent months.|
Rab and police officials said the JMB is still a concern for them as some dedicated operatives are active in the organisation. Some of the militants have training on making high-powered explosives like belt bombs.
The JMB is reportedly in a shambles due to arrest of its chief Saidur Rahman, military wing chief Shiblu and acting chief Anwar Alam alias Nazmul over one and a half months since July 12.
The officers said Sohail Mahfuz, who is oldest among three serving JMB Majlish-e-Sura members, might have taken over as its helmsman.
"Sohail Mahfuz is known as an arrogant person. He might launch bomb attacks against those he would consider as enemy," said a top Rab official seeking anonymity.
Rab Director General Hassan Mahmood Khandker told The Daily Star yesterday they have kept a grip on JMB activities. Even then, he considers it a potential threat.
Rab sources said there is also a chance that one of two sura members -- Shaheed alias Osman and Dhaka University graduate Siddiqur Rahman alias Mostafiz who worked as an adviser to Saidur -- has assumed the post of JMB ameer.
The JMB stepped into the spotlight as a hardcore militant outfit through synchronised bomb attacks in 63 of 64 districts on August 17, 2005.
In subsequent attacks, they killed a number of people including two judges in Jhalakathi.
Since August 17 blasts, crime busters have so far arrested 985 JMB leaders and operatives, including 607 captured by Rab alone.
The arrestees include its founding ameer Shaikh Abdur Rahman who along with his second-in-command Siddiqul Islam alias Bangla Bhai and four other leaders was executed on March 30, 2007.
Police sources said a total of 322 cases were filed with different police stations since the countrywide blasts.
Of the cases, police have submitted charge sheets in 289 cases and final reports in 25 cases. Eighteen of the cases are under investigation.
Trials of 115 cases have been completed in which 51 persons got death sentence, 131 life imprisonment and 184 different terms. Some 318 people have been acquitted and 174 cases are still under trial.
Of the 322, a total of 154 cases were lodged in connection with the August 17 bomb blasts.
Of the cases, detectives have submitted charge sheets in 133 cases and final reports in five cases. Sixteen cases are still under investigation, CID sources said.
The sources also said trials were completed in 81 cases in which 29 accused were sentenced to death, 80 life imprisonment and 79 persons to different terms. Some 57 cases are still under trial.