The al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) in a video message posted by its media publicity wing As-Sahab productions has mentioned Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s name for the first time.
In the May 2 video titled ‘From France to Bangladesh: The Dust Will Never Settle Down’, AQIS chief Asim Umar mentioned the PM when he says that there is a war going on against Muslims “through World Bank and IMF policies, drone attacks, Charlie Hebdo’s writings, UN charter, official sermons by muftis and Narendra Modi’s utterances.”
Indian intelligence officials said the report is being analysed.
The group also claimed responsibility for the death of four Bangladeshi bloggers, including that of Avijit Roy, a Bangladesh-born American writer who was hacked to death by two machete-wielding assailants in Dhaka on February 27.
A professed atheist, Roy posted articles profusely in his popular blog Mukto-Mona (Free Mind).
The other Bangladeshi bloggers whose deaths the group has claimed responsibility for are Oyasiqur Rahman Babu, Rajib Haider and AKM Shafiul Islam, who taught at Rajshahi University.
“The killing mission started in Pakistan with the murder of the secular Dr Shakeel Auj and blogger Aneeqa Naz,” Umar says.
The formation of AQIS was announced last year by al Qaeda chief Ayman al Zawahiri where he mentioned Burma, Bangladesh and Assam as some of the key areas of operation of the new group headed by Asim Umar.
While some media reports have said that Umar is possibly of north Indian origin and migrated to Pakistan in the nineties, Indian intelligence agencies say there is nothing to substantiate the claim.