Navi Mumbai on high alert after Islamic State messages with Dhoni, Kejriwal’s names appear on bridge pillars

High alert has been sounded in Navi Mumbai’s Uran area after messages in praise of the Islamic State (IS) appeared on one of the pillars of a bridge here on Tuesday.

The messages written on the pillar of Khopte Bridge in Navi Mumbai’s Uran area of Raigad district praises soldiers fighting for the IS and mentioned names of IS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and other terrorists. One of the messages also mentions the name of Hafeez Saeed. Images of rockets are drawn in another.

Speaking to IndiaToday TV, Navi Mumbai Police Commissioner Sanjay Kumar said, “The messages or inscription drawn below the bridge mentions names of (Arvind) Kejriwal and (MS) Dhoni and also (Abu Bakr al) Baghdadi.”

Sanjay Kumar added, “We have collected all possible evidence from the spot which includes beer bottles, mugs and other things. Locals have told us that the spot is frequented by youngsters to consume alcohol but we are investigating every possible angle to find out who could have drawn the inscription.”

Police said they were going through CCTV cameras installed on the nearby roads for clues.

“The messages are very detailed and also mention time and how each and every mentioned installation can be attacked. The names of personalities and politicians could be code words. So we can’t take any chances. Investigations are on in full swing,” said a senior officer privy to the investigation.

A separate team and Navi Mumbai crime branch are investigating the matter.

“There are vital installations nearby the bridge and therefore these messages cannot be ignored,” said a Navi Mumbai police official on condition of anonymity.

ONGC, an armoury station, power station, JNPT etc, are located near Uran.

“It may be a local playing a prank, but this cannot be taken lightly. The particular place does not have CCTV cameras, therefore, we are taking statements of people to see if they saw someone writing the messages on the pillar,” another senior officer said.

On Tuesday afternoon, Navi Mumbai police carried out a detailed inspection of the spot where the inscriptions were found and maps using a marker were drawn.

Teams of IB, NIA and Maharashtra ATS also visited the spot. The Maharashtra unit of the anti-terrorism squad has already begun their investigation into the matter, while the crime branch of Navi Mumbai police is separately investigating the matter.

Recently IS announced Kashmir as part of its caliphate and its first province. They named it Wilayah of Hind. Following the Sri lanka terror attack, intel reports of pro-IS fighters travelling towards Kerala and other coastal states were also sounded a few days ago.

READ | Indian Army keeps strict vigil on possible Islamic State activities in Kashmir

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Updated: June 4, 2019 — 2:41 pm