The Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) unit–a specialised branch of Bangladesh Police formed to tackle terrorism and transnational crime–said it arrested four members of the banned militant outfit Neo-Jamaatul Mujahideen Bangladesh (Neo-JMB), in the capital's Uttara area, on Thursday, in connection with a recent bomb blast in Paltan area.
"Acting on a tip-off, a CTTC unit team conducted the operation and arrested the four for their involvement in the planning and execution of the Paltan bomb blast. We also seized cell phones from their possession," said Saiful Islam, deputy commissioner of the CTTC unit.
The arrestees are: Mamun Al Muzahid alias Suman alias Abdur Rahman, Md Al Amin alias Abu Ziyad, Md Mojahidul Islam alias Rokon alias Abu Tarique, and Saroare Hossain Rahat.
Including them, the CTTC unit has arrested nine persons in connection with the Paltan blast.
Mamun Al Mujahid, the leader of the cell, was previously a dacoit and wanted in 12 different cases–including weapons and robbery ones.
Recently, IS-inspired militant outfit Neo-JMB's activities on online platforms inspired Mamun and he started working for the outfit. He then convinced three others to be his associates.
On July 24, the Neo-JMB cell left an improvised explosive device (IED) in the capital's Paltan area, which later exploded but injured no one.
On August 11, the CTTC unit, in a special operation called "Elegant Bite," in Sylhet, arrested five members of the Neo-JMB cell including its chief–Sheikh Sultan Mohammad Naimuzzaman.
Based on the information provided by them during interrogation, the investigators managed to trace and arrest Mamun and four others. "We also have evidence of communication between Naimuzzaman and Mamun," said Saiful Islam.
Beside the Paltan incident, the cell members left a fake IED with a motorbike of a police sergeant in the capital's Gulistan on July 25, to spread fear among police officials.
On July 31, the cell members blasted a small crude bomb at a temple in Naogaon but no one was hurt.