Four men from Kerala, deported by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for their suspected relations with Islamic State (IS), were on Tuesday detained by the security agencies at the Thiruvananthapuram and Karipur airports in the state.
They were released after interrogation by the National Investigation Agency (NIA), Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) and the state intelligence, according to sources.
The source said agencies could not find any evidence regarding their links with the IS. They had only shared and commented on IS-related posts on social media. However, the source said, investigations will continue.
The four men were deported from Abu Dhabi after cancellation of their visa. Two men arrived at the Thiruvananthapuram International Airport and the other two at the Karipur airport.
The two detained at Thiruvananthapuram have been identified as Anas of Kilimanoor in Thiruvananthapuram district and Aromal of Adoor in Pathanamthitta district, according to reports. The two were born and brought up in Abu Dhabi.
The other two, who arrived at Karipur airport, are natives of Malappuram and Kozhikode. One of them is said to be a relative of Jabeer, who was similarly deported from UAE last week.
The four youths were among a group of over 10 Indians who were put under the scanner in the UAE for their alleged participation in the IS propaganda on social media. Four of them were deported in the last two weeks. They were released after questioning.
Additional Director General of Police (Intelligence) A Hemachandran ruled out any action against the youths as their activities in the domain of social-media could not construed as unlawful as per Indian law.
“UAE and other Gulf countries view them seriously as they have strict laws against social media activities,” Hemachandran told the Hindustan Times.
However, a Muslim organisation in Kerala has taken serious view of the matter and has launched an online campaign to deter youths from being lured by the IS. A youth from Kochi had complained of supporters of IS dragging him into their group in WhatsApp.
The Cyber police at Kochi have launched an investigation into the complaint.