Explosion at St. Anthony's Church at Kochchikade
Explosion at St. Anthony's Church at KochchikadeTwitter [Representational Image]

Tamil Nadu Thowheed Jamath (TNTJ), a non-political Islamic organisation based in the state, has denied that it is linked to the terror group blamed for the bombings in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday. Sri Lanka has blamed National Towheeth Jama'ath (NTJ) for the blasts which killed at least 290 people and injured over 500.

According to The Times of India, TNTJ general secretary E Mohammed said that they are an apolitical Islamic institution that has no connection with National Thowheeth Jama'ath.

Mohammed said that they had earlier collaborated with Sri Lanka Thowheed Jamaat (SLTJ) for several social campaigns to make people understand the meaning of Thowheeth or monotheism (the belief that there is only one God) and the preachings of Islam.

Abdul Gaffar Hisham, the president of SLTJ, also confirmed that they have worked with TNTJ over several social causes and have always campaigned against terror, adds the report.

According to Hisham, their organisation was linked with the attack for having a common name. He said that there are several groups in the nation that bear similar names including Ceylon Thowheeth Jamaat.

The leaders of both the organisations have denied any link with the now named terror group NTJ, stating that their basic ideologies are different from that of the terror groups. TNTJ said that their organisation only conducts peaceful protests against problems faced by Muslims in Tamil Nadu.

Before becoming the prime suspect in the recent blasts in Sri Lanka, NTJ was not that popular for an Islamic extremist group. They were earlier blamed for vandalising a Buddhist statue on the island nation, an act that had outraged the majority community.

Sri Lankan officials also believe that a small radical group cannot plan such a well-executed attack without proper backing from major terror groups.