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SIMI has changed its name: Basher

Vicky Nanjappa | August 29, 2008 14:21 IST
Last Updated: August 29, 2008 14:23 IST

The Students Islamic Movement of India has changed its name. The new name for the outfit is SIM -- Students Islamic Movement -- according to Abu Basher, the alleged mastermind of the Ahmedabad and Bengaluru blasts.

Basher told the Hyderabad police who interrogated him at Gujarat that it was a conscious decision to refer to the organisation as SIM. "We do not want to have any boundaries and hence by adding India, the organisation would seem restricted. We want our operations to be larger and hence we decided to knock India out of it," Basher reportedly told his interrogators.

Investigators says Indian Mujahideen is SIMI V 2.0

The investigations by the Hyderabad police also revealed another startling fact. Basher said during the interrogation that nearly Rs 20 lakh was collected from Hyderabad and Karnataka to set up training camps across the country.

Interrogators told that Basher showed no remorse and kept stressing that his deeds have assured him of a place in heaven. Basher, who confessed to his involvement in the Gujarat blasts, said the money was collected as charity during his two-year stay in Hyderabad. "With the money I set up training camps in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. Several youth were recruited under the SIMI [Images] banner and trained at these camps," he told interrogators. A part of the amount was also used to buy ammunition and other material.

Basher said that in AP most of the funds came from the Saidabad area whereas in Karnataka the money was collected in the northern towns of Hubli and Bidar. "I used to travel extensively across the country to collect funds and on one occasion I even managed to collect Rs 80,000 in a matter of 48 hours from Hyderabad alone," he said.

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