The NIA has decided to invoke Section 125 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) that deals with waging war against an Asiatic power in alliance with the government of India to prosecute Kalyan boy Areeb Majeed who allegedly joined IS fighters in Iraq and Syria last year.
This is possibly the first time that this section is being used.
“We have sought sanction from the home ministry to prosecute Majeed. Besides charging him under Section 125 of the IPC, we also want to invoke Sections 16 and 18 of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act that deal with terrorist acts and conspiracy thereof,” said an NIA official requesting anonymity.
The official added that it is very likely that Section 125 of the IPC is being invoked for the first time. “No such record is maintained but we believe that this section is rarely invoked,” he said.
The NIA has time till the end of this month to file formal charges against Majeed.
Majeed travelled with three friends — Shaheen Tanki, Fahad Sheikh and Aman Tandel, all from Maharashtra’s Kalyan town — to Iraq in May last year on the pretext of a pilgrimage, but all four disappeared and allegedly joined the ISIS.
Majeed is believed to have spent six months in ISIS-controlled areas along the border of Iraq and Syria and took part in active combat. When he was injured, the ISIS left him at the Turkish border. Last November, he was escorted back to India.
To strengthen its case, the NIA has sought evidence from 11 countries against Majeed. Another official said that this is the first time evidence has been sought from Iraq and Syria under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty.