Officials in India report that 14 million rupees (about 225,000 USD) of terror money has been seized. The money was intended for investment in the real estate market in Bangalore. Rediff News reports that “all the money” came from charity and extortion carried out by terrorist groups. The seizure was the result of an investigation into a bombing at a political rally late last month.
Real estate purchases have been a tactic used by terrorist groups and their financiers in both the UAE (see here and here) and Kenya. Rediff points out that this isn’t the first time that terrorists in India have dabbled in real estate either. This is a trend worth keeping an eye on…
NIA seizes terror money worth Rs 1.4 crore in Bangalore
The National Investigation Agency has seized Rs 1.4 crore, believed to be terror money, in Bangalore. The agency sources told Rediff.com that the money was sourced through modules in North East and was sent to Bangalore.
It is said that the money was part of a major transaction made during the planning of the Patna blasts of October 27.
The money was found following the interrogation of several suspects by the NIA and is believed to have reached Bangalore a few days back. It was sent to Bangalore to be housed safely.
The NIA sources said that the money could have been in transit to other parts of Karnataka where it was to be kept in a safe house and used for future operations by terror groups.
The NIA has been probing links between Islamic terror and North Eastern terror groups for some time now. This is a possible link to the same, sources in the agency felt.
Unholy terrorist-builder nexus
More details regarding the seizure of terror money from Bangalore have emerged and it is now learnt that the money was being invested into real estate. The money was transferred to Bangalore from Manipur by a terror group.
The money was received by a businessman in Bangalore called Shanti Meital who in turn was to pump the same into real estate.
All this money is collected by terror groups through extortions and charities. They then invest in real estate and rake in the profits later.
Sources in the NIA said that this is a major racket in the country today and all terror groups are indulging in the same.
“There have been several instances where Indian Mujahideen operatives have also parked money in real estate. Riyaz Bhatkal is an example of this. He was in a deal with a Mumbai-based businessman and was constructing apartments in Mangalore worth Rs 10 crore,” the source pointed out.
The source added that they have several more builders under the scanner who have been parking terror funds in their businesses.
The NIA will seek the help of the local police and other agencies in order to bust this financial nexus between builders and terrorists.