Pratyush Manoj Writes: Recently, an Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) cell was busted in the state of Madhya Pradesh through the joint operations of MP police and the Intelligence Bureau. A total of five youngsters were nabbed who were appointed to recruit as well as carry out terror strikes, thus holding the ISIS banner. Also last year, 15 youth were stopped from leaving the country to join the ISIS. All of them belonged to Telangana.
It is a well known fact that India is on the list of enemies of the ISIS apart from Pakistan and Bangladesh, where according to Islamic State, “Islam is being suppressed”. And it is quite possible that the IS could tap the ‘anti-India’ sentiment and use it to spread its influence as al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups have done in the past.
Although, the response to ISIS from India has been very less compared to the numbers from Europe and even Maldives, but the question is should something be done about it?
One can safely assume that the threat from ISIS to India is more on the lines of ‘Ideological Indoctrination’ and not an armed conflict. Hence, attention should be given on the various forums that are being used by IS in order to radicalise the Indian youth. When we say “various forums”, there can be many. For example, cells that are set up like the one that was busted in MP, where the youth are literally brainwashed and their minds are corrupted. The only thought they are left with is that they will die for a cause and Allah will bless them. They give them moral justification to kill.
Apart from this, the other forum is through various websites. The process of ‘Online Radicalisation’ has been one of the foremost method used by IS to exploit the youth. They are on the lookout for the people who visit such sites which talks about ISIS or view pictures of violence etc on a daily basis. After they have identified the person, they send him regular e-mails, slowly radicalising him to the point where his mind has been poisoned and he is a walking time bomb.
The government has to take measures to curb such sites and also will have to monitor the usage of these sites. The bottom-line is, it does not matter how many join or respond to the ISIS, what’s important is how many get past the intelligence services and the police. The IB and the police have to be on its toes.