The Ahmedabad Crime Branch has arrested three individuals on Wednesday for their alleged involvement in setting on fire seven shops being a part of the larger conspiracy adhering to Pakistan’s spy agency ISI for spreading terror by trapping unsuspected petty criminals who direly require money, said the officials.
The three of them have been charged with the IPC sections of initiating a war against the government and provisions of the stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), added the officials.
An ISI agent, identity unknown had trapped three men to ablaze the shops in Gujarat following the ISI’s plans for spreading terror and compromising the internal security, and invoking economic losses to the people in India, the police revealed.
The three men arrested are – Bhupendra Vanzara, Anil Khatik and Ankit Pal. From them, Pal was taken to the hospital as he had tested positive for the Coronavirus.
While addressing the reporters, Additional Commissioner of Police (Crime) Premvir Singh said the ISI handler, who was known as Baba Bhai had several Facebook profiles with nearly same names, and directed the three men to set on fire seven cloth shops located in the Kalupur area on March 20 night.
He said, “After the incident, we received intelligence inputs that the shops were deliberately set on fire by some men at the behest of the ISI. Following a detailed probe into the matter, we nabbed the three men.”
“The three accused received ₹1.5 lakh from the ISI agent via Dubai-Mumbai ‘angadia’ (courier) route for setting the shops on fire,” Singh further said.
The official revealed that Vanzara is a petty criminal who got in touch with the ISI agent via Facebook. Baba Bhai offered Vanzara money for killing random people and setting the shops on fire without giving his complete identity.
Singh further said, “Vanzara had earlier taken ₹25,000 from the ISI agent through Paytm to buy a gun.”
Deputy Commissioner of Police Chaitanya Mandlik said, “We traced some of the IP addresses, used by the ISI agent to chat with Vanzara, to Karachi, which establishes the ISI connection. This was a money trap laid by them to lure Indian citizens to spread terror and cause economic losses.”
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