In a nationwide crackdown on terror suspects this week, the National Intelligence Agency on Friday arrested 14 people, with Karnataka topping the list.
In an official statement released on Friday night, the NIA said it had arrested all 14 suspects across 12 locations that they had zeroed in on. In operations that were spread across several days, the NIA arrested six people from Karnataka, two from Maharashtra, one from Uttar Pradesh.
The NIA arrested five suspects on Friday and eight on Saturday. All of them are now being interrogated by the agency. The names of all but one person were released. It is unclear if this was an error.
Table of suspects arrested until January 23
The media release said that the men are believed to have radicalised by ISIS propaganda material. The NIA say they have taken possession of jihadi literature, laptop, mobile phones and vehicles. Materials used to assemble improvised explosive device were reportedly recovered from Hyderabad and Mumbai.
The arrest of six suspected terrorists in Karnataka comes days after the arrest of a madrassa teacher from Bengaluru for suspected links with al-Qaeda.
The families of two of the suspects have addressed the media, saying that they fear their family members are being framed.
On Friday, as news of arrests trickled in, journalists in Karnataka asked the state Home Minister G Parameshwara to respond to claims by the state unit of the BJP, that Karnataka had become the ‚Äėsafest‚Äô place for terrorists.
Parameshwara said such a perception was not true and added: ‚ÄúSuch issues should not be given a political colour. They have to be tackled without politicizing the issue.‚ÄĚ