September 2003 News

Indiansí love for Noor makes militant to confess crime

18 September 2003
The Daily Excelsior
Daily Excelsior Correspondent

NEW DELHI: The love Indians showered on baby Noor did not go waste. Moved by the same, a militant trained by Pakistanís Harkat-ul-Jehadi-e-Islami (HUJI) today confessed his guilt in a city court and expressed the desire to lead a new life - one away from the paths of terror and destruction. 'I was moved by the gesture shown by Indians towards noor, who had come to Bangalore for a heart surgery,' a remorseful Mohd Ashraf alias Mohd Shakeel told Additional Sessions Judge S N Dhingra confessing his crime. Ashraf had been charged under POTA and IPC for allegedly conspiring to kill President A P J Abdul Kalam and kidnap cricketers Sachin Tendulkar and Sourav Ganguly. A resident of Layya village in Pakistanís Punjab province, Ashraf told the court he wanted to reciprocate the gesture shown by Indians and spread the message of goodwill among his countrymen. Making his confessional statement, the militant, whose designs - police claimed - included a plan to trigger blasts at the Bhaba Atomic Research Centre, said he had taken to terror in return for money promised by his mentors. He stated in Pakistan, one Mehboob and Mufti Hifayatullah had confronted him and promised to pay him money if he joined their ranks. 'I got entrapped in their scheme of things and got misguided,' Ashraf said adding, he entered India through the Bangladesh border. He prayed the court to have mercy on him and adopt a lenient view. Following the admission, the court convicted him of the charges and set September 29 for hearing the arguments on sentence. Ashraf was facing trial in the case along with five other Pakistani and Bangladeshi militants associated with HUJI. Besides Ashraf, the court on March five had framed charges against the co- accused Tariq Mohammad, Ashhaq Ahmed, Mohammad Amran, Abdul Majid, Mufti Mohammad Asrar, Arshad Khan, Ghulam Mohammad Dar and Ghulam Qadar Bhatt. Ashraf also told the court that more of his co-accused were preparing to confess their crime. (PTI)


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