DELHI: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has arrested two associates of gangster Chhota Shakeel for their involvement in illegal activities and indulgence in terror financing in connection with its probe against fugitive gangster Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar.
An NIA spokesperson said that the arrested accused have been identified as Arif Abubakar Shaikh and Shabbir Abubakar, both residents of Mumbai. They are close associates of Shakeel Shaikh infamous as Chhota Shakeel, who operates an international criminal syndicate from Pakistan and is involved in extortions, narcotics smuggling and violent terrorist activities in India including the 1993 Bombay blasts.
The action comes days after the anti-terror probe agency sleuths carried out searches at 29 locations in Mumbai on premises linked to hawala dealers associated with Dawood Ibrahim, who is wanted in the 1993 Bombay blasts case.
The NIA had rounded up 12 people for questioning after searches and also recovered a firearm and incriminating documents from them.
The case pertains to terror or criminal activities of the international terrorist network of D-Company. It involves Dawood Ibrahim and his associates including Haji Anees aka Anees Ibrahim Shaikh, Chhota Shakeel, Javed Patel aka Javed Chikna and Ibrahim Mushtaq Abdul Razzaq Memon aka Tiger Memon. They are indulged in arms smuggling, narco-terrorism, money laundering, circulation of FICN and are in unauthorised possession or involved in the acquisition of key assets for raising terror funds and working in active collaboration with the international terrorist organization including Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) and Al Qaeda (AQ).
The case was registered suo-moto by the NIA on February 3 this year.
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had earlier arrested Maharashtra Minister and senior NCP leader Nawab Malik in a money laundering case after registering a case on the basis of the NIA case.