Al-Qaeda operative admits to links with Kandahar hijack terrorists
Rehman had provided safe shelter in Cuttack to a Pakistani terrorist involved in Kandahar hijack. The said terrorist belonged to Pak-based Harkat-ul-Mujadhideen group that hijacked the Delhi-bound Air India flight IC-184 from Kathamandu to Kandahar, said an official of the Special Task Force of Crime Branch of Odisha Police.
The hijackers had demanded release of Azhar Masood in order to release the passengers of the plane.“As one of the terrorists involved in the hijack was close to Rehman, he brought him to Cuttack and kept him in a secret location,” the officer said quoting the AQIS operative, who is being interrogated by the STF.
Though Rehman, who has been brought on a 10-day remand by the Odisha Police, initially refused to admit his links with terror outfits, he opened up as soon as evidence collected by NIA and IB were placed before him, the officer said. He added that the police had been probing into the truth behind Rehman’s statements.
“We have been locating the places where Rehman actually sheltered the Pakistani terrorist,” the officer said, adding that the operative’s brother was also one of the accused in the 2002 American Centre blast.