ISIS worries bring Bengal’s madrasas back on radar | kolkata | Hindustan Times
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ISIS worries bring Bengal’s madrasas back on radar

kolkata Updated: Dec 07, 2015 14:19 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times
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The Khagragarh blasts of October 2, 2014 exposed an elaborate jihadi network in Bengal.(File photo)

With the dreaded ISIS raising its head in Bangladesh and literally breathing down Bengal’s neck, the state government has directed all security agencies to step up vigil on some madrasas in areas bordering the neighbouring country.

An alert has been sounded across all police stations in all areas bordering Bangladesh. While local police stations have been asked to keep an eye on suspicious activities, if any, in these madrasas, the state Intelligence Branch (IB) has started collecting regular updates.

“We have information that some suspicious people have been spotted in some madrasas in Murshidabad. They put up at these madrasas for two-three days and then disappear. We have alerted all police stations and asked them to dig out details on these people,” an IB officer said.

“ISIS has already declared its intent to export terror to India and will look at madrasas to recruit fighters,” the officer said.

The accidental blasts at a safe house in Burdwan’s Khagragarh on October 2, 2014, had blown the lid off a festering terror network straddling several districts. The investigation into the Khagragarh case drew the security agencies to Jamaat-ul-Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB), a terror group in the neighbouring country that was taking in recruits in Bengal and had even set up a camp at a madrasa in Burdwan’s Simulia to train children in subversive activities.

Though the investigation into the case was initially assigned to the state’s criminal investigation department, it was later handed over to the National Investigation Agency (NIA). The NIA learnt that many madrasas in Murshidabad, Nadia and Malda were used by JMB as training centres.

Siddiqullah Chowdhury, head of the Jamiat-e-Ulema-e-Hind, which controls the maximum number of madrasas in Bengal, said, “We’ve asked our members to stay alert and report suspicious activities, if any.”