Neo JMB women’s wing member arrested in Dhaka

The arrested is an Indian citizen, according to CTTC

The Counter Terrorism and Transnational Crime (CTTC) branch of Bangladesh police has arrested a woman for her alleged involvement with the women’s wing of banned militant group Neo Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen (JMB).

The arrested is Ayesha Jannat Mohona alias Jannatul Tasnim or Pragya Debnath, an Indian citizen.

Confirming the matter to Dhaka Tribune, CTTC Assistant Commissioner Imran Hossain said Mohona was arrested from the Sadarghat area in Dhaka on Thursday evening.

An Indian passport, a Bangladeshi birth certificate, a Bangladeshi national identity card, and two mobile phones were recovered from her possession.

The CTTC learnt about Mohona’s Indian citizenship during the primary interrogation. Her home is in West Keshabpur village under Dhaniakhali police station in West Bengal’s Hooghly district, Imran said. 

Mohona, formerly a traditional Hindu, converted to Islam in 2009 when she was a ninth grader. She became interested in studying religion after that, the official added.

“At one point, Mohona was introduced to several members of Neo JMB’s women’s wing through social media. 

“She became very close to Asmani Khatun alias Bondi Jibon, the head of the organization, and then committed herself to organizational duties,” Imran further said.

CTTC sources said Mohona used to come to Bangladesh from India frequently since 2016. She collected money from the members of the organization based in different countries and spent it on various activities of the banned militant outfit.

Mohona recently collected a fake Bangladeshi birth certificate and later used it to obtain a Bangladeshi national identity card.

She married Amir Hossain Saddam, a Bangladeshi citizen living in Oman, via mobile phone. She moved to Bangladesh on October 19, 2019, on her husband’s advice.

She rented houses in Dhaka’s Keraniganj and Narayanganj’s Fatullah. At that time she taught at various madrasas in those areas while hiding her identity, the sources said.

Mohona was recruiting members on behalf of the organization. Soon after Asmani Khatun’s arrest, Mohona left her job at the madrasas and went into hiding. 

She used various online accounts to recruit male members for the organization and provide religious training to female members. She also used to disburse money among the female members after collecting it from various sources.

CTTC sources said Jannat has been shown as arrested in a case filed with the Motijheel police station on January 4 under the Anti-Terrorism Act. Mohona has been placed on a four-day remand after she was produced before a court. 

The operation to arrest other members of the organization is still ongoing, said CTTC.

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