NEW DELHI: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Friday arrested three alleged Indian propagandists and recruiters of terror outfit Islamic State, who were deported from the United Arab Emirates late Thursday.
According to intelligence officials, Sheikh Azhar Al Islam, Mohammed Farhan and Adnan Hussain from Maharashtra, Karnataka and Jammu & Kashmir were involved in the radicalisation of vulnerable youth and were also in the process of recruiting some of them to carry out terror strikes in India and elsewhere. The trio will be produced before a special court on Saturday. Express earlier this week broke the news of the impending deportation of the youth. “Credible information has been received that Hussain, Farhan and Islam along with their other unknown associates are involved in a conspiracy to identify, motivate, radicalise, recruit and train Indian citizens located both in India and other countries for planning and executing terrorist attacks in India and in other friendly countries,” sources said.
The trio, believed to be members of the Abu Dhabi module of the IS have been charged with conspiracy to carry out strikes in India and outside. The NIA has registered a case against thte three youth under Section 120B of the IPC and Section 18, 18-A, 18-B of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, 1967. Last year, the UAE had deported Afsha Jabeen alias Nicky Joseph for recruiting youths online for IS. In fact, after the the recent arrest of 14 IS sympathisers and recruiters in India, the intelligence agencies have intensified surveillance to nab youth having links with the terror outfit. Sources said lone-wolf kind of attacks cannot be ruled out as several modules arrested by the NIA appear to be independent who were radicalised through online propaganda after they got in touch with propagandists. Although, number of Indians, who travelled to Syria and Iraq is still very less, recent developments indicate well-educated youth are getting self-indoctrinated through online materials.
In January 2015, Salman Mohiuddin of Hyderabad was arrested when he was preparing to board a flight to Dubai on way to Syria via Turkey. According to Indian intelligence agencies, a total of 23 Indians have so far joined the IS of whom six were reportedly killed in different incidents in Iraq-Syria. Among the 23 are two absconding members of the banned Indian Mujahideen who had gone from their hideouts in Pakistan.
The dead were identified as Athif Vaseem Mohammad (Telangana), Mohammad Umar Subhan (Bengaluru), Maulana Abdul Kadir Sultan Armar (Bhatkal, Karnataka), Saheem Farooque Tanki (Thane), Faiz Masood (Bengaluru) and Mohammad Sajid alias Bada Sajid (Azamgarh, Uttar Pradesh).
Around 150 Indians are under surveillance for their alleged online links with ISIS. As many as 30 other Indians, who were radicalised by IS elements, were prevented from travelling to the conflict zone in the Middle East.