KARACHI: The Anti-Extremism Cell of the Crime Investigation Department has claimed to have arrested a 23-year-old activist of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, suspected of having beheaded five men in the Swat Valley in 2008.
The suspect was arrested in a pre-dawn raid at a house in the Mochko area of Ittehad Town, CID sources said. They claimed to have received a tipoff about his presence. The arrested man, identified as Mian Gul Syed, is said to have killed people thought to be military informants.
According to the CID, Gul Syed is from Swat and had moved to Karachi following the peace accord in 2009. Since then, he is suspected to have been residing alone in a rented house in Ittehad Town and working as a daily wager.
According to initial investigations, Gul Syed studied till class ten but did not sit for the matriculation exams. Instead, allegedly inspired by Maulana Fazlullah's radio sermons, he joined a madrasah in Matta tehsil from where he was sent for guerilla training.
The police also claimed to have recovered a TT pistol and five rounds of bullets from his possession. CID sources believe that Gul Syed was part of Fazlullah's group and worked under the supervision of Commander Ali Akbar.
SP Omer Shahid of the Anti- Extremism Cell told The Express Tribune that Gul Syed had been involved in many other crimes as well. Among them was the bomb planted under the Kharari Bridge in Tehsil Matta that partially damaged the bridge and a nearby mosque, Shahid said.
Moreover, he was also involved in an attack on an army convoy in 2008 that killed 13 army personnel, he added. "The arrested terrorist was also involved in at least two more such attacks in Swat," Shahid said.
However, he did not give details of them. During the investigation, Gul Syed is said to have named accomplices Ramadan, Yusuf Khan, Hussain Shah and Shahenshah.
Since the start of 2010, the Special Investigation Unit and the CID have arrested more than 33 people, claimed to be militants, including some believed to be high-value Afghan Taliban and al Qaeda leaders. About two weeks ago, the CID had arrested Sardar Shah, another suspected militant commander of the Fazlullah group.
Shahid said that following the military offensive, a lot of militants migrated to Karachi. "They are living individually or in small groups in the city and belong to different areas of the Swat Valley."