Dhaka cafe attack ‘mastermind’ killed
Bangladesh security forces killed three Islamist militants on Saturday, including a Bangladesh-born Canadian citizen accused of masterminding an attack on a cafe in Dhaka last month that killed 22 people, mostly foreigners, police said.
The militants were cornered in a hideout on the outskirts of Dhaka and, having refused to surrender, were killed in the ensuing gunbattle, Monirul Islam, the head of the Dhaka police counterterrorism unit, said.
US secretary of state John Kerry is due to visit on Monday to discuss security after a series of killings targeting liberals.
Islamic State claimed responsibility for the assault on the cafe in a posh neighbourhood where militants singled out nonMuslims and foreigners, killing Italians, Japanese, an American and an Indian.
The government has consistently denied the presence in the country of any transnational militant organisation such as al Qaeda or Islamic State. But police believe that Jamaat-ulMujahideen Bangladesh, which has pledged allegiance to Islamic State, was involved in organising the cafe attack.
The suspected mastermind killed in the raid was identified as Tamim Ahmed Chowdhury, a 30-year-old Canadian citizen born in Bangladesh. Analysts say Islamic State in April identified Chowdhury as its national commander. Bangladesh policemen take away the bodies of suspected militants after a raid in Narayanganj, near Dhaka, on Saturday.
Transport commissioner Pravin Gedam called an urgent meeting of the leaders of taxi and autorickshaw unions at noon on Sunday to avert a proposed strike against app-based taxi aggregators such as Ola and Uber from Monday.
Mumbai has around 40,000 black-and-yellow cabs and around one lakh auto rickshaws.
Fed up of being turned down by taxi and auto drivers and the poor condition of their vehicles, several Mumbaikars have switched to services such as Ola and Uber, which began operations in Mumbai in mid2014 and now account for more than 25,000 taxis in the city.
Although the majority of taxi and autorickshaw unions said they won’t participate in the proposed strike, the agitating unions — Jai Bhagavan Mahasangh and Swabhiman Taxi and Rickshaw Sanghatana — are firm on their decision.