On Monday, the National Investigative Agency (NIA) filed a supplementary charge-sheet in the Special NIA court against two terrorists in the ISIS Omar Al Hindi Module case. It must be mentioned that the case pertains to a criminal conspiracy by 15 radical Islamists from Tamil Nadu and Kerala to carry out terror attacks in several parts of South India.
As per the NIA, the charge sheet was filed against Sidhikhul Aslam (31) and Muhammad Polakkanni (28). While Aslam has been booked under Indian Penal Code (IPC) Section 120B (criminal conspiracy), Sections 38 and 39 of Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA), charges have been filed against Polakkanni under sections 120B of IPC and Sections 18, 18B, 20, 38 and 39 of UAPA.
NIA files chargesheet against two terrorists in ISIS Omar Al Hindi Module Case pic.twitter.com/jneNZLrug7— NIA India (@NIA_India) January 25, 2021
Aslam was arrested on October 28 last year, after he returned to India from Saudi Arabia. He was involved in active recruitment of ISIS/ Daish-inspired terrorist module for furthering Islamist ideology in the country. On the other hand, Polakkanni had travelled to Georgia in early 2018 to cross over to Syria via Turkey and join the ISIS. He was, however, nabbed by the authorities while trying to cross the border using a fake passport. The Islamic terrorist, who propagated extremism through the disbursement of material endorsing Jihadi ideology, was arrested after his return to India on September 19 last year.
NIA convicted terrorist Safvan in 2019
In a statement, the NIA said that it took suo motu cognisance of the case on October 1, 2016, on the basis of credible information. On the following day, the central investigative agency arrested the five accused in connection to the criminal conspiracy. Reportedly, the accused were involved in the formation of terror outfit Ansarul Khilafa-KL and planned to attack judges, cops, politicians and congregation of Jews. On November 27, 2019, a NIA Special Court convicted six radical Islamists namely Swalih Mohammed, Rashid Ali, Ramshad N. K., Safvan P, Manseed Muhmood, and Moinudheen P. K.
Safvan and the Hathras connection
Interestingly, Safvan, who is the 9th accused in Omar Al Hindu Module case, was a Graphic Designer at a radical Islamist PFI-funded Thejas Daily. The news organisation, which had shut shop in 2018, came to the spotlight after a Kerala-based journalist from Thejas Daily named Siddique Kappan was arrested by the UP Police on October 5 while he was proceeding to cover the Hathras case.
In its affidavit to the apex court, the Uttar Pradesh government informed that Kappan was using the garb of journalism to create a caste divide and law & order disturbance in the State. Kappan was associated with the radical Islamist outfit Popular Front of India (PFI) and a banned terrorist organisation named Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI).
The Uttar Pradesh government had submitted a copy of a front-page story by Kappan in Thejas, dating back to November 30, 2011, wherein he claimed that Al-Qaeda terrorist Osama bin Laden was a ‘martyr’. The government revealed that Siddique Kappan was the mastermind of several other riots, who in collusion with Thejas Editors, wanted to create religious unrest in the State of Kerala.