The National Investigation Agency (NIA) is looking into Assamese citizen Akthar Hussain Lashkar’s ties to the outlawed terrorist group Al-Qaeda. He is accused of radicalising youths and plotting to send them to Kashmir and Afghanistan’s Khorasan province to receive terrorist training. According to a First Information Report (FIR), Lashkar also incited young people to engage in religious warfare.
Lashkar was discovered engaging in activities related to “radicalization of youth through social media, involvement in provoking youths to indulge in treason against India and inciting communal violence by projecting that Indian forces are committing atrocities on Muslims in Kashmir,” among other things, while residing in the Thilaknagar neighbourhood of Bengaluru.
The FIR reads, “Further, the aforementioned accused had conspired to send the radicalised youth to Kashmir and Khorasan province of Afghanistan to undergo terrorist training and wage war against India and had links with Al-Qaeda and other entities and handlers from foreign countries to carry out terror-related activities across India,” reads the FIR.
The NIA FIR was filed on August 30 against Lashkar and Abdul Alim Mondal alias Md. Juba, a resident of Salem, Tamil Nadu who is originally from Kultali, Godabar, Tangrabichi, South 24 Parganas, West Bengal. Both were charged with offences under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and numerous sections of the Indian Penal Code, including 10, 13, 15, 16, and 20. The FIR is based on a complaint that the Bengaluru Police had previously filed on July 24.
On July 24, Bengaluru Police learned that Lashkar had founded the Telegram groups “The Eagle of Kohrasun” and “Hinder-Eagle” and radicalised young people through them.
Later, the detectives discovered that the accused had planned to train young radicals as terrorists in Kashmir and the Afghan province of Khorasan while also inciting them to conduct war in the name of Islam.
Additionally, the investigation revealed that Lashkar had attempted to engage in “disruptive actions” in India. “He has connections to organisations and handlers in Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan for the sake of terrorism.”
“The said individual (Lashkar) is involved in provoking youths to wage war against India by projecting that Indian forces are committing atrocities on Muslims in Kashmir. He thereby provoked the youths to indulge in treason against India, affecting the sovereignty of India and has conspired to create communal violence in India,” the FIR mentions.
According to the FIR, Lashkar has ties to the banned terrorist group Al-Qaeda and planned to depart for Kashmir from Bengaluru.
Following a directive from the Ministry of Home Affairs, the NIA re-registered the case, and the Bengaluru branch of the anti-terror organisation is conducting the probe.