Udayavni Special

ISIS Kerala module case: NIA arrests 4 operatives including one from Mangaluru

Team Udayavani, Aug 5, 2021, 8:27 AM IST

Mangaluru: The National Investigation Agency on Wednesday arrested four people as it conducted simultaneous searches in Jammu and Kashmir and Karnataka in connection with terror activities of a group propagating the violent ideology of the ISIS, an official said.

An NIA spokesperson said the searches were carried out along with local police units at five locations — three in Kashmir and one each in Bengaluru and Mangalore.

The arrested accused have been identified as Obaid Hamid of Srinagar, Muzammil Hassan Bhat of Bandipora; Ammar Abdul Rahman of Mangalore and Shankar Venkatesh Perumal of Bengaluru, he said.

The case pertains to terrorist activities of a group led by one Mohammed Ameen of Kerala, the official said.

He said three people — Ameen and his associates Mushab Anuvar and Rahees Rashid — were arrested in March after preliminary examination.

The group has been running various ISIS propaganda channels on different social media platforms such as Telegram, Hoop and Instagram for propagating the violent Jihadi ideology, and radicalising and recruiting new members to the terror module, the NIA official said.

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) had registered a case against seven known and other unnamed persons under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act on March 5, 2021.

The NIA official said the group of radicalised individuals, under the leadership of Ameen, and having pledged allegiance to the proscribed terrorist organisation ISIS had identified certain people in Kerala and Karnataka for targeted killing.

After the decline of ISIS Caliphate in Syria/Iraq, Ameen visited Kashmir in March, 2020 for ‘Hijrah’ (religious migration) and for engaging in terrorist acts. He had also raised funds in association with Kashmir-based accused — Mohammad Waqar Lone and his associates, the official said.

As part of the conspiracy, funds were also transferred to Lone by the accused in the case through banking channels and digital payment methods on the directions of Ameen, the official said.

Ameen and his associates were also radicalising gullible Muslim youths for joining Jihad and unlawful activities in India, and had been successful in expanding the network in Kashmir and part of Kerala and Karnataka, the NIA official said.

The searches on Wednesday were conducted at the premises of the accused/suspects who were continuously in touch with Ameen and his associates through various groups/channels on encrypted chat platforms and had raised funds for furtherance of activities of ISIS, he said.

During searches, several digital devices, including laptops, mobile phones, hard disk drives, pen drives, multiple SIM cards of different service providers and incriminating documents were seized, the official said.

The four people arrested on Wednesday were involved in raising funds, and radicalising and motivating more people to join ISIS, he said, adding that further investigation in the case is on.

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