Thiruvananthapuram, July 28: Following the arrest of two suspected Islamic State sympathisers by the Kerala Police, the BJP state unit on Thursday demanded a probe into a claim by one of the arrested accused that 700 persons from the southern state were converted to Islam.
Arshid Qureshi and Rizwan Khan -- alleged to be close to controversial preacher Zakir Naik of the Islamic Research Foundation (IRF) -- were picked up in Mumbai in a joint operation by the Maharashtra Anti-Terror Squad and the Kerala Police. They were remanded in police custody by a Kochi court on Monday.
"Qureshi claims 700 persons from the state had been converted to Islam. So, there is need for a full-fledged probe. The Indian Union Muslim League (second biggest party in Congress-led United Democratic Front) should now apologise for their defence of the IRF activities," state BJP General Secretary M.T. Ramesh told reporters here.
He said the activities of certain organisations claiming to be religious study centres in Malappuram and Kozhikode districts should also be looked into.
"Several of these centres are said to be recruitment centres for terrorist activities and it has to be probed," Ramesh added.