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Delhi court awards varying jail terms to 15 ISIS operatives in conspiracy case

A Delhi court on Friday awarded varied jail terms to 15 persons for their affiliation to terror organisation ISIS and for hatching a conspiracy to establish its base in India by recruiting Muslim youth through social media platforms to carry out acts of terrorism in the country.

Special Judge Parveen Singh of the Patiala House Court sentenced the convicts for criminal conspiracy and other offences punishable under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and Explosive Substances Act.

The court awarded them varying punishments. Nafees Khan was sent to jail for 10 years, three convicts for seven years, two for six years and nine for five years.

Those awarded seven-year jail terms were Abu Anas, Mufti Abdul Sami Qasmi and Mudabbir Mushtaq Sheikh, while Amjad Khan and Azhar Khan were sent to jail for six years.

The convicts who were awarded five years’ jail term are; Obedullah Khan, Mohd Hussain, Najmul Huda, Mohd Afzal, Suhail Ahamed, Mohd Aleem, Moinudeen Khan, Asif Ali and Syed Mujahid.

The case was registered on December 9, 2015. During the course of the investigation, searches were conducted in various cities, which led to the arrest of 19 accused persons.

It was revealed that the accused persons had formed an organisation by the name of Junood-ul-Khilafa-Fil-Hind, a group seeking to establish a Caliphate in India and pledging allegiance to ISIS, to recruit Muslim youth to work for ISIS and commit acts of terrorism in India at the behest of one Yusuf-Al-Hindi who was based in Syria and was purportedly the media chief of ISIS.

This case had a huge impact on the like-minded people who were likely to join ISIS. After the arrest of the above ISIS terrorists, their activities were minimized and their other associates were identified and questioned to unravel further plans.

Several ISIS sympathisers, who had gone to join ISIS, were intercepted at various locations in the Middle East and were deported back to India.

The investigation conducted by the agency stopped the facilitation of the ISIS members in India as well as abroad.

After completion of the investigation, NIA had filed charge sheets against 16 accused persons in 2016-2017.

According to the National Investigation Agency (NIA), this is the first case in which the conspiracy of this magnitude involving online radicalisation was effected on cyberspace in the aftermath of the declaration of the Islamic Caliphate by Abu-Baqar-Al-Bagdadi in 2014.

“No terror organisation prior to the emergence of ISIS had used ICT (Information Communication Technology) on such a large scale to scout, recruit, train and motivate its cadre for acts of terror.

“Utmost precaution was taken by them by using encrypted tools to keep the communication among the ISIS handlers and potential recruiters, both in India as well as abroad, secret,” the agency had said in a statement.