A Bangladeshi terrorist, 28-year-old chemical engineer Kausar Ali, was arrested by the NIA and the International Bureau from an apartment in Bengaluru's Ramnagar on Tuesday.
Kausar Ali had a price on his head - Rs 5 lakh - offered by the NIA since the 2014 Khagragarh blast in West Bengal. Kausar Ali is a member of the banned terror outfit Jamaatul Mujahideen Bangladesh or JMB.
The NIA is taking Ali and two other associates to New Delhi for interrogation. Sources say the arrests may have prevented a major multi-city terror attack by the Kausar Ali-led module.
A hunt was on for Kausar ever since the Khagragarh blast in West Bengal's Burdwan on 2nd October, 2014 that led to the unearthing of a major terror operation by the proscribed JMB, whose members had taken shelter across the border. The NIA took over the case in March 2015 and chargesheeted 21 people including Kausar.
But immediately after the blast, Kausar Ali fled to Bangladesh and stayed there till 2016. Sources say there may have been a falling out with the JMB, but Kausar Ali returned to India, went to Murshidabad and Burdwan, recruited 15 youth, moved to Chennai, and trained them to make bombs and IED circuits.
According to sources, Kausar Ali was planning serial blasts in metros across India for its stand on keeping the Rohingyas out. He will be questioned in Delhi by the agencies.