New Delhi, Nov 16: The Indian government is currently watching 55 Indians who are in touch with ISIS operatives.
A list of those sympathetic towards the ISIS has been prepared and India is currently watching 55 of them who are showing signs of either lending their hand of support to the outfit or even join the group.
The Intelligence Bureau has drawn up a data base of ISIS related activities. Although India does not face a major threat from the ISIS in the near future, the officials are leaving nothing to chance.
India does not want a Lashkar-e-Tayiba type of scenario which saw the emergence of this terrorist group in a big way.
We are constantly updating our data base an intelligence bureau official said. He also added that at the moment 55 Indians pose a risk and are either trying to help the ISIS or join the group.
They are all under watch and the minute any move is made by them, they will be picked up. Some of them are even abroad and with the help of the foreign agencies we continue to keep a watch on them, the IB officer pointed out.
Apart from the 55 who have been placed under the watch list, Indian officials with the help of NGOs and elders of the Muslim community are also counseling 65 persons. All these 65 persons were in touch with ISIS operatives. Many were seeking out information about the ISIS while others were all set to leave India and join the group either in Syria or Iraq, the official said. For now they are being counseled.
The intention is to ensure that such persons are brought to the main stream and do not attempt getting back to the ISIS, the officer also adds. He says that the process does not end with counseling, but such persons will be placed under the watch list for a long duration.
The other exercise that has been undertaken by the Indian investigators is the questioning of several persons who have shown a tilt towards the outfit. The officials have so far across India questioned 133 persons who are considered to be sympathetic towards the ISIS.
The questioning of these persons has helped the IB prepare a data base in order to understanding the working of the outfit. These persons have revealed the names of agents and also foreign operatives who help Indians reach the ISIS headquarters.
However officials say that the situation is under control and while the numbers may seem large, our officials have managed to get a control of the situation.
India's biggest concern continues to be the Pakistan based groups. However such exercises against the ISIS are extremely important in the backdrop of the outfit entering Afghanistan.
Once the ISIS has a full blown Afghanistan plan, they will target Indians galore, officials feel explain. Hence there is a need to be prepared all the time, the officer also informed.