In a pre-dawn operation, sleuths of National Investigation Agency (NIA) along with Jammu and Kashmir Police and Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) raided multiple locations in South Kashmir’s Anantnag district and a madrasa in downtown area of the Srinagar city. Six suspected persons have been detained by the agency for further questioning.
Sources said that an NIA team raided a Dar-ul-Uloom in Nawab Bazar area of the old city just before dawn and conducted thorough searches. Reports said that after preliminary investigation, one person who runs the madrasa was taken into custody for further questioning. His laptop and some documents too have been seized by the agency. Sources said that the said madrasa is affiliated with a Dar-ul-Uloom in Lucknow.
Simultaneous raids were conducted at many places in Anantnag district as well. The raids were conducted at several locations including Pushroo Achbal, Magray Pora Achabal, Sunsooma Achabal. While the NIA team conducted the searches, police and CRPF provided logistic support to avoid any disruption.
Searches in the case today led to recovery and seizure of a large number of incriminating documents and digital devices such as mobile phones, tablets, laptop, hard disks and T-shirts having ISIS logo.
In a statement, NIA said that Sunday’s raids in Kashmir were conducted for a case registered by NIA on 29 June 2021 under Sections 124A, 153A, &153B of IPC and Sections 17, 18, 18B, 38, 39 and 40 of the UA(P) Act 1967 in connection with the conspiracy of the ISIS to radicalise and recruit impressionable youth in India to wage jihad against the Indian state.
“In order to execute its nefarious plan, an organised campaign has been launched over cyberspace which is supplemented by on ground terror financing activities,” the statement said.
It added that “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 radicalising and recruiting members to the fold of ISIS.” It said that an India-centric online propaganda magazine the ‘Voice of Hind’ (VOH) is published on a monthly basis with the aim to incite and radicalise impressionable youth by projecting a skewed narrative of imagined injustices in India to arouse a feeling of alienation and communal hatred.
The day also saw an Al Qaeda module being busted in Uttar Pradesh, leading to an alert being issued in parts of Uttar Pradesh, including the Lucknow Commissionerate area. The terror unit had planned attacks, including suicide bombings, in crowded areas of Lucknow and other cities in the state, the police said on Sunday.
Two men from Lucknow—Minhaj Ahmed and Maseeruddin—have been arrested, leading to the discovery of the terrorist cell, the police said. “ATS (Anti-Terrorism Squad) UP has uncovered a big terror module. The team has arrested two terrorists linked with Al Qaeda’s Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind. Arms, explosive materials have been recovered in searches,” senior police officer Prashant Kumar said at a news conference.
“They along with their associates were planning to conduct a blast in Lucknow and surrounding areas before 15 August. Pistols, IED and huge explosives were recovered from their possession. The search operation is underway to nab their other associates” stated Kumar. “The terror activities were being run from Peshawar and Quetta on the Pakistan-Afghanistan border,” he added.
According to the Uttar Pradesh police, the terrorist module planned attacks on monuments and other public areas.