The National Investigation Agency on Sunday conducted searches at the homes of two people in Kerala’s Kasaragod district and one person in Palakkad district in connection with an inquiry into the Islamic State terrorist group’s recruitment network in the state. The three people, who the agency said are being questioned at present, are suspected to have links with people who left the country to join the terrorist organisation.
“During searches, a number of digital devices including mobile phones, SIM cards, memory cards, pen drives, diaries with handwritten notes in Arabic and Malayalam, DVDs of Dr Zakir Naik besides untitled DVDs, CDs with religious speeches, books of Dr Zakir Naik and Syed Kutheb have been seized from their residences,” the agency said in a statement. “Digital devices will be forensically examined and analysed.”
Naik has been on the Indian government’s radar ever since allegations arose that he had inspired one of the terrorists behind the Dhaka restaurant attack on July 1, 2016. He was also accused of meeting two brothers from Kerala who were among those who went missing in West Asia and were feared to have joined the Islamic State.
Though the investigating agency did not mention if the inquiry is linked to the serial blasts in Sri Lanka on April 21 that left 253 people dead, unidentified officials told Manorama that investigators are trying to ascertain if the three played any role in the attacks. The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the attack.