The National Investigation Agency in collaboration with the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and the Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW), were responsible for busting a major Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) module yesterday. 10 different locations in Anantnag, Srinagar, Awantipora and Baramulla were raided on the intervening night of Saturday and Sunday, around 2 am.
These simultaneous raids were carried out with the support of the Jammu and Kashmir Police and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF). Nine suspects are being questioned while five are presently under NIA custody.
Among those under the agency’s custody are three accused ISIS terrorists who have been arrested in connection to the 'Voice of Hind’ a radical monthly propaganda magazine. The accused in the case are Umar Nisar Bhat a resident of Magray Mohalla Achabal situated in the Anantnag District, Tanveer Ahmad Bhat as resident of Gori Mohalla Achabal Anantnag and Rameez Ahmad Lone a resident of Chak Achabal Anantnag.
The suspects had been under surveillance for the past three months and the NIA had registered a case on 29 June 2021 under sections 124A, 153A, and 153B of the Indian Penal Code and sections 17, 18, 18B, 38, 39 and 40 of Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act 1967 in connection to ISIS and their conspiracy to “radicalise and recruit impressionable youth in India to wage violent jihad against the Indian State.”
“ISIS terrorists operating from various conflict zones along with ISIS cadres in India, by assuming pseudo-online identities, have created a network wherein ISIS related propaganda material is disseminated for radicalizing and recruiting members to the fold of ISIS. In this connection an India-centric online propaganda magazine ‘the Voice of Hind’ is published on monthly basis with an aim to incite and radicalize impressionable youth,” said the agency in a statement.
The NIA had earlier conducted searches at the premises of the arrested accused and recovered large number of incriminating documents, multiple digital devices, and T-shirts with ISIS logo. Preliminary examination of the seized material and examination of the accused persons revealed that they are active cadres of ISIS and have been using the cyberspace to propagate inciting material by the radical online magazine.
As many as 17 editions of the 'Voice of Hind' have been published in the public domain. Several of them are from Anantnag's Achabal. According to intelligence sources, Umar (who is now under NIA custody) was the face of the online editions of 'Voice of Hind' which was aimed at inciting Indian Muslims against the system.
“Examination of the arrested accused led to searches earlier today at two more locations in the Anantnag district in which a number of digital devices and other materials have been seized. Investigation in the case continues,” the NIA added.