State ‘ignored’ IB warnings

Reports on communal undercurrents allegedly kept in cold storage

Updated - July 14, 2016 08:02 am IST

Published - July 14, 2016 12:00 am IST - KOZHIKODE:

Successive State governments, particularly of the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF), have allegedly ignored several warnings by the State Special Branch and the Intelligence Bureau (IB) about movements that are claimed to have been involved in indoctrination and radicalisation of Muslim youths in the State, top sources in the Home Department told The Hindu .

The sources alleged that intelligence reports on communal undercurrents had been kept in cold storage for multiple reasons, including compulsions of coalition politics. Several reports submitted during the tenure of former Additional Director General of Police (Intelligence) T.P. Senkumar, who later became the State Police Chief, had mentioned about groups engaged in radicalisation, conversions, training, and recruitment.

These classified documents were prepared in the wake of the suspected networking of Al-Qaeda in south Asia from 1990s and later, the emergence of the Islamic State, the sources said.

Significantly, Mr. Senkumar and the then Telangana Director General of Police Anurag Sharma had, at a three-day DGP conference in Rann of Kutch in Gujarat in December 2015, made a detailed presentation on radicalisation, its spread and responses in their respective States.

“Earlier, several isolated NRI families were suspected to have flown out to Syria or Yemen from Dubai or elsewhere, but it is now for the first time that cases have cropped up about entire groups going missing from Kerala,” the sources said.

In January 2016, the Union Ministry of Home had identified about 25 sleeper cells in Kerala, mostly in the State’s northern parts that had suspected links with the IS network. These sleepers, which were supposed to provide logistical or financial support to IS operatives, are still under surveillance of both the State and intelligence agencies, the sources said.

Notably, one of the intelligence reports spoke about 5,793 conversions from Hinduism and Christianity to Islam that had occurred between 2011 and 2015 in the State. Of these, 47 per cent were women and 36 per cent of these women were below 35 years of age.

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