An ISIS recruiter has called for lone wolf attacks on Hindu religious congregations throughout India.
The ISIS recruiter in a recent audio clip transmitted via Telegram app is from Kasargod and asks Indian Muslims to launch attacks by driving a truck through devotees — mimicking similar ISIS inspired assaults in the West — or poisoning food.
The voice has been identified as that of Abdul Rashid alias Abdulla Abdul Rashid, the prime accused in the Kasargod Islamic State case being investigated by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
The case relates to 21 ‘radicalised’ Keralites, including women and children, who left in 2016 to perform hijra (religious journey) to Islamic State-controlled Nangarhar province in Afghanistan. The NIA has already filed a charge sheet against 15 accused. Of them, one is in judicial custody and 14 others like Rashid are absconding.
“Yes, the voice in the clip is indeed that of Abdul Rashid. This has been verified by NIA with the help of his friends here and also matches with the voice in around 18-20 clips sent by him earlier, which we hadanalysed,” said an NIA officer, according to India Times.
Sources said that Rashid’s past clips had exhorted Indian Muslims to perform hijra to an ISIS-controlled territory, claiming how those who had done so were leading a comfortable and contended life there.
However, Rashid’s latest clip asks youths to stage attacks within India. “If you cannot do the hijra, then you should help the jihad using your wealth. If that too does not materialise, go for attack against the idolators and disbelievers. Use your intellect. Poison their food. Use trucks,” he says, reflecting a realisation that travel to shrinking ISIS territory may not be possible.
According to NIA sources, Rashid had in May 2017 created two Whatsapp groups, one with 212 members and another with 249 participants. The content shared by him on these groups comprised religious discourse and interpretations of Islam aimed at drawing youth to ISIS ideology and inviting support for ISIS.