ISIS suspect, with links to Abu Dujana, deported from Doha; to be interrogated by NIA
An Islamic State suspect with alleged links to Riyas Aboobacker alias Abu Dujana — a member of IS’ Kasargod module in Kerala who was arrested last week — was deported from Doha on Tuesday evening, an Intelligence Bureau official familiar with the development said.
The National Investigation Agency took the custody of the man, identified as Faisal, as soon as he was brought to Delhi.
The official said, Faisal, also a native of Kerala, had been in regular touch with Aboobacker, who was arrested last week. The latter was allegedly planning suicide attacks in Kerala after being inspired by the mastermind of Sri Lanka bombings, Maulvi Zahran Bin Hashim, leader of National Towheed Jama’at (NTJ).
A second IB officer said Aboobacker had convinced three-four persons from Kerala and Tamil Nadu to follow Zahran Hashim’s radical speeches and Faisal could be one of them.
“Faisal could also be in touch with Abdul Rashid Abdulla, the leader of Kerala’s Kasargod ISIS module, in which 22 persons including women and children had travelled to Afghanistan’s Nangarhar province to fight for the ISIS,” said the officer.
He added that Faisal’s name cropped up during the interrogation of Aboobacker, who is still in NIA custody, following which Faisal has been deported to Delhi from Doha with government’s diplomatic efforts.
Agencies suspect that IS members, including Aboobacker, Faisal, Abdulla (in Afghanistan) and others were planning something big in India as well.
As first reported by HT, the members of Coimbatore module and Kasargod module of IS in Tamil Nadu and Kerala respectively, were either in touch with Sri Lanka attacks mastermind or followed his speeches.
Zahran Hashim and another Sri Lanka bomber, Mohammad Azaan, had travelled to India in 2017 and 2018 to discuss the plans of Islamic State.
Since April 21 Sri Lanka attacks, which claimed the lives of over 250 people, there has been a major crackdown on suspects in both the southern states.
According to the NIA, Aboobacker has disclosed that he wanted to carry out “suicide attacks” in Kerala.
Aboobacker will be confronted with Faisal, said the second IB officer.
The NIA has claimed Aboobacker followed speeches/videos of Zahran Hashim for more than a year and had also followed the speeches of Zakir Naik.
“Riyas revealed that he was also having online chat with Abdul Khayoom alias Abu Khalid (suspect in the Valapattanam ISIS case) who was believed to be in Syria,” the NIA stated in a statement last week.