The Delhi University (DU) graduate who is currently being counselled by Intelligence Bureau (IB) after she was found to be preparing to join the Islamic State (IS) was in the first phase of IS radicalisation, according to home ministry sources.
Sources said when the woman completed her graduation from a top DU college, she wanted to become a journalist. But she reportedly became increasingly frustrated when she did not get a job of her liking.
She then went to Australia for further studies. There she came in contact with certain individuals who either had links with the IS or were IS sympathisers, said home ministry sources.
When she returned home early this year, she was found to have maintained contact with the IS links in Australia and interacted with several others through a social media platform. Sources said the woman — the daughter of a retired Lieutenant Colonel and a Hindu by faith — had made up her mind to convert to Islam and then proceed to join the IS.
When questioned by parents over her internet activity, she expressed her desire to join the IS. Her father then got in touch with the NIA, which led him to the IB.
When contacted, Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju said: “We are seized of the matter. Agencies are taking the right steps. We are doing everything necessary.”
Sources said though the woman has been cooperating with the agencies and has agreed not to join the IS, the IB has kept her under watch.
“There are various layers to the online recruitment process. First, a potential jihadi is identified on the basis of his/ her interest in the outfit’s ideology. He is then given access to a core group which further interacts in detail. Once the recruiters are convinced that the person is motivated enough to join, direct communication channels are opened,” said a home ministry official.
Meanwhile, security establishment sources said they were not alarmed by the case and were not looking at every student going to or coming back from Australia with suspicion.