Online radicalization of young Muslim youth who watched videos of the IS, bayans (discourses and lectures) of radical Islamic preachers, such as controversial televangelist Zakir Naik and others such as Anwar Awlaki, Abdul Sami Qasmi, Meraj Rabbani, Tausif ur Rehman and Jerjees Ansari has been established from electronic devices seized from the IS terror accused by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).
This forms a key part of the evidence gathered by the agency which has filed a chargesheet against eight IS accused for involvement in terrorist conspiracy in the Hyderabad IS module case.
Investigation has established that the members downloaded the IS propaganda videos, IS magazine – “Dabiq”. The group was associated with the terrorist organization called the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (IS) and pledged their allegiance through the Bay’ah to Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-proclaimed Caliph of the Islamic State and formed a group called Jund ul Khilafa Fi Bilad Al Hind (Army of the Caliph from the South India).
The chargesheet has been filed against the Yazdani brothers - 24 year old Mohammed Ilyas Yazdani and 29 year old Mohammed Ibrahim Yazdani ; 31 year old Abdullah Bin Ahmed Al Amoodi ; Habeeb Mohammed @ Abu Shaibah; Muzaffar Hussain Rizwan @ Rizwan ; Yasir Naimathullah @ Naimath; Mohammed Ataullah Rahman @ Ghouse and 24 year old Abdul Raoof @ Mohammed Almashrifi.
The Yazdani family has claimed innocence and alleged excesses by the NIA. However the agency says that the accused and other unknown persons had entered into a criminal conspiracy to wage a war against the country by collecting weapons and explosive materials to target public places including religious sites and sensitive government buildings in various parts of the country.
The NIA has said that during searches, several electronic gadgets, mobile phones, hard discs, semi-automatic firearms, air rifle, pellets, target boards, explosive precursors which can be used for the preparation of TATP, urea nitrate explosives and other sucn items were seized.
"Investigation has established that the group used different methods of communication to connect within the group and with the overseas IS handlers," says the chargesheet . "This included the use of the dark net through Tor browser, use of encryption applications such as Orbot, Amn al Mujahid (an encryption program by Al-Fajr Media Centre), Chat secure, Telegram and encrypted emails like Tutanota on a Tails Operating System platform," it adds.
NIA officials said they deliberately used secure communication and encryption to evade the monitoring by law enforcement agencies.
Investigation conducted, so far, has successfully established that all the accused persons are members of a terrorist gang and all of them had the knowledge of the conspiracy. Each member played his role in the conspiracy, says the NIA.
It says that several meetings conducted by the members over the period where many decisions were taken on the course of action to be taken in furtherance of the conspiracy.
"The tasks were delegated on a need to know basis. The group made efforts to go and join the IS, took instructions from the handler, formed a terrorist group, pledged Bay’ah to the IS, recruited other members, contributed money, utilized the funds so collected to procure raw materials, , in pursuance of the terror conspiracy'" says the NIA in its chargesheet .
The sleuths say they gave a tight case against all the accused persons to prove that they had conspired with a common intent to strike terror and threaten the safety, security and integrity of the nation.