13 people having links with ISI arrested in Tripura

Agartala, Jul 6 : As many as 13 people, including a hardcore activist of the Pakistan-based Inter Services Intelligence (ISI), were arrested from different Indo-Bangladesh bordering locations of West Tripura in the past three days.

Referring to the confessional statements of the accused, police here today said ISI agent Munir Khan (22), a resident of Bahawalpur in Pakistan, was assigned to monitor the Indian Army's movements in Punjab sector.He was supposed to travel to Punjab from Agartala. Munir had been spreading the ISI net in Tripura and involving middle-aged poor youths in his mission. These youths had been engaged in smuggling activities and following Munir's inputs, police later arrested 12 other people of Tripura origin. The latest detention of four people was made from Ramnagar area of Agartala last night.

According to report, Munir is the son of one Abu Ashraf, of Bahawalpur, who lives in Punjab province of Pakistan. Munir was trained for three and a half months on espionage at Bahawalpur and Multan.

He had first flown down to Dhaka on June 25 where he was received by an unidentified 'doctor' at the Shahajalal Airport. The 'doctor', whose real identity was not disclosed, ''was seen waiting at the airport with a name placard for him.'' Finally, early this month, he crossed the Indo-Bangladesh border through unfenced areas of Sonamura.

Revealing the details of the Indian associates of ISI, police officials said all these people were engaged in well-paid contracts for guiding and facilitating the travel of ISI activists through Agartala to other Indian cities. Some villagers living along Tripura-Bangladesh border had also been working as link persons between the two countries. Police have sought all the SIMs that were provided from June 26 onwards in the state by all the service providers. The arrested have been booked under various sections for waging war against India and criminal conspiracy and 14 sections of Foreigner's Act as well as three sections of Passport Act. Seven of the arrested have been sent in police custody for ten days.