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2 from Kerala who may have joined IS were in touch with UK couple

india Updated: Sep 13, 2016 00:40 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
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Two people from Kerala, suspected to have joined Islamic State in Afghanistan, were in touch with a couple in UK. (AP File Photo)

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) probe into the disappearance of 22 men, women and children from Kerala, suspected to have joined the Islamic State (IS) in Afghanistan, has revealed that at least two of them were in touch with a couple in the United Kingdom.

The NIA has learnt that two of the women were pregnant when they left India and one gave birth to a baby girl on September 6. The second pregnant woman had delivered a baby boy last month.

One of the missing persons — Dr Ijas, who left with his wife Refaela — told his family on Monday about the birth of the baby girl.

The case of missing persons was initially probed by the Kerala police that arrested a woman named Yasmin from Delhi airport on August 1 when she was trying to leave the country for Kabul along with her child. When the case was transferred to the NIA, its sleuths questioned Yasmin.

“Yasmin said that of the missing people, Abdul Rashid and his wife Ayisha were in touch with a UK couple that had converted to Islam. They were using communication application Telegram to send messages in support of IS and the Caliphate,” said an NIA officer.

Investigators say the missing people were from Kasargod and Palakkad districts of Kerala and they left India between mid-May and first week of July.

All of them exited India to reach Kuwait, Dubai, Muscat or Abu Dhabi using different airports and finally landed in Iran’s capital Tehran. It is suspected that from Tehran they illegally crossed over Afghanistan. htc