A suspected Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist was arrested on Thursday morning from Kanpur by the Uttar Pradesh Anti-Terrorism Squad which said he was planning to attack a prominent temple on Ganesh Chaturthi.
"The terrorist has been identified as Qamer Uzzaman, 37, a resident of Assam, and is an active member of Hizbul Mujahideen," Director General of Police OP Singh said at a press conference on Thursday. Initial investigation suggests Qamer was planning an attack during the festival that began on Thursday and will go on for 10 days, police said.
Qamer, who was arrested from Kanpur's Chakeri area, had gone missing from Assam. In a video recovered from his mobile, police say, he can be seen surveying temples in the city.
The state's Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) made the arrest with the help of Kanpur Police and the National Investigation Agency. "He was active on social media and had posted a picture of himself in April 2018 with an AK-47, after which he was under our radar," the DGP said.
The photo in which Qamer, who is from Jamunamukh in Assam's Nagaon district, is seen holding an automatic rifle recently went viral on social media.
The caption of the photo suggested he had joined Hizbul, which reads: "Org: Hizbul Mujahideen; Name: Qamer Uzzaman; S/O Ibrahim Zaman; R/O: Assam India; Code: Dr Hurairah; Qul: MA English."
Qamer is "educated with knowledge of computers, but he failed his BA third-year exam," the police chief OP Singh told reporters. "The terrorist had undergone training in Pakistan in 2017 and had joined the Hizbul there. He also stayed abroad between 2008 and 2012," he added.
(With inputs from PTI)