The Counter-Terrorism and Transnational Crimes (CTTC) unit captured three suspected female militants during a raid at a militant den in Dhaka’s Azimpur area last night while another killed himself.
The militants were staying at a flat on the first floor of a six-storey building at Pilkhana Road in the area for around a month, said Sahabuddin Koreshi, acting commissioner of Dhaka Metropolitan Police (DMP).
Inspector General of Police (IGP) AKM Shahidul Hoque told reporters: “We suspect that one of the injured women is Jebunnahar Shila, wife of New JMB offshoot leader Murad alias Jahangir alias Omar, who was killed during a raid in Mirpur earlier this month.”
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Police also rescued three children from the building who were sent to the Victim Support Centre in Tejgaon, the IGP added.
“We have found remarkable similarities between the dead militant and Karim, who rented the flat in Bashundhara Residential Area for the Gulshan attackers,” the IGP told reporters.
At an on-spot briefing after the raid, Counterterrorism unit’s ADC Sanwar Hossain said Abdul Karim killed himself inside the den and the three captured women also attempted suicide.
“It is likely they wanted to kill themselves so that we could not interrogate them,” the officer said.
The third female fled the house. Law enforcers chased her and caught her some 400 metres away after shooting her in the leg.
A local named Shahubuddin Babu said: “We saw a woman escaping the area around 7:30pm. Later, some police members chased her. During the chase, she yelled that if the police officials tried to capture her, she would attack them with machete.
“The law enforcers shot her in her leg and caught her, putting her in the police van with the locals’ help.”
“The other two female militants have been identified as Sharmin and Shahela,”said Sanwar Hossain. “They are in critical condition.”
The CTTC officials who were injured in the raid – Mahtab, Jahiruddin, Lablu, Ram Chandra Biswas and Shajahan Ali – have been admitted to Dhaka Medical College Hospital, police said.
These were members of the advance team, which knocked on the den’s door and were attacked soon afterward. The backup team then arrived at the scene and found Karim’s body in one of the rooms and the other women trying to commit suicide.
The children, too, were aggressive towards the police, ADC Sanwar said.
A search of the flat yielded four pistols and 15 bullets, he added.