The National Investigation Agency on Saturday raided 31 locations in Tamil Nadu and Telangana to thwart a radicalisation and recruitment campaign by proscribed global terror group ISIS, an official said.
Several digital devices, documents and incriminating books in vernacular and Arabic languages, and Rs 60 lakh as well as $ 18,200 in cash were seized during the searches, a spokesperson of the federal anti-terror agency said.
The official said the agency is in the process of examining the data in the seized mobile phones, laptops and hard disks.
NIA teams raided 22 locations in Coimbatore, three in Chennai and one in Kadaiyanallur of Tenkasi district in Tamil Nadu, and another five locations in Telengana’s Hyderabad, the spokesperson said.
The searches were conducted in connection with a case, registered by NIA Chennai under various sections of the Indian Penal Code and Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, that pertains to clandestine operations by a group of individuals to radicalise vulnerable youth, the official said.
“The radicalisation was being carried out in the garb of holding Arabic language classes through their Regional Study Centres. Such radicalisation activities were being flashed through social media platforms and online messaging services like WhatsApp and Telegram,” the spokesperson said.
The official said investigations have revealed that the ISIS-inspired agent provocateurs were engaged in the propagation of ‘Khilafat’ ideology, which is inimical to India’s constitutionally established principles of secularism and democracy.
“The group of persons involved in the case had entered into a conspiracy to radicalise and recruit youth who were later found involved in terrorist as well as unlawful acts and activities. One such terror attack related to the Coimbatore car bomb blast case of October 23 2022,” the spokesperson said.
The official said the investigations in the case are continuing as part of the NIA’s concerted efforts to thwart ISIS attempts to initiate vulnerable and susceptible youth into the terrorist network that is working actively to spread terror in the country with the overarching aim of disturbing and disrupting its peace and communal harmony.
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