Mehdi Biswas not involved directly in recruiting youths for Islamic State: NIA

Bangalore police had obtained a copy of the FIR in the case before pressing charges against Mehdi.

By: Express News Service | Bangalore | Published: December 16, 2014 1:58 am
Mehdi indicated that his activities were limited to posting and reposting of pro-ISIS material on his twitter account and social media sites. Mehdi indicated that his activities were limited to posting and reposting of pro-ISIS material on his twitter account and social media sites.

Following preliminary investigations, National Investigation Agency (NIA) officials have concluded that West Bengal youth Mehdi Masroor Biswas, 24, who allegedly operated pro-Islamic State Twitter handle @shamiwitness, was not directly involved in recruiting Indian youths for the terror outfit in Syria and Iraq.

Mehdi was quizzed on Saturday and Sunday by NIA officials from Mumbai probing the IS recruitment case, that was registered on November 28 following the return of Areeb Majeed, one of the four Indian IS recruits. NIA SP Subhas Warke questioned Mehdi in Bangalore where the youth is in police custody.

Sources said that after interrogating Mehdi, officials concluded that he was not directly involved in recruiting Areeb or his three associates, who travelled to Iraq in May to join IS. Following his return from Syria, Areeb had told investigators that IS recruiters lured him into signing up for the group on the Internet.

According to the NIA, the case registered in Mumbai was based on the allegation that some Indian youths had joined IS and waged war against “Asiatic powers in alliance with the Government of India and are likely to commit terrorist acts in India”.

Bangalore police had obtained a copy of the FIR in the case before pressing charges against Mehdi. Both Areeb and Mehdi have been booked under the obscure Section 125 of the IPC, under which a person is accused of waging war against Asiatic powers that are allies of India.

UK’s Channel 4 had identified Mehdi as the operator of the Twitter handle @shamiwitness. He was accused of running a forum to inspire English-speaking jihadists, especially from Britain.

The @shamiwitness handle was considered an authority on IS affairs. Following Mehdi’s arrest, it was found that the youth, who took up the cause of radical Islam when he was a second-year engineering student in Bengal, gained expertise on IS affairs in Syria and Iraq by translating and retweeting Arabic messages put out by IS supporters.

Arif and other IS recruits from around the world were allegedly directed by recruiters to @shamiwitness to learn about the activities of terror outfit.

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  1. H
    harith
    Dec 16, 2014 at 1:39 am
    Never leave these two rougues; What happened in Sydney cafe today should have been a mind blowing lesson for all govts; if you leave a terrorist, this is the result and innocents lost lives; if these two terrorists are left, they will certainly grow in to bigger terrorists and will cause enormous destruction, either directly or indirectly; lock them up for ever in high security prison; atleast, until they reach 80 years old (if they live) or up to a point of becoming diseased; they richly deserve to loose their life;other wise, these two cruel educated terrorists will prove to be extremely costly in future
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    1. j
      jaihind101
      Dec 16, 2014 at 2:11 am
      it would be government's biggest mistake if this terrorist is let loose , he is dangerous , his motives were dangerous , his thoughts were dangerous and his act was dangerous these kind of low level terrorists are future killers , they should be eliminated at once , before get as much information as possible then after he should be handed over to USA
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      1. L
        Logan Hartanian
        Dec 18, 2014 at 10:28 pm
        is he even a Muslim ?
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        1. R
          Ram Rahim
          Dec 16, 2014 at 3:24 am
          Never Trust a Muslim. The Australians showed great compion and allowed millions of Muslim refugees from Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Syria, Turkey and Lebanon. What the Australians got in return? Murder of innocent citizens by murderer Muslims.
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