A dreaded female recruiter of the Islamic State has been interrogated by the National Investigation Agency. A two-member team of the agency travelled to the Philippines to question Karen Aisha Hamidon, a 36-year-old Filipino woman accused of radicalising several Indians over the past four years.
The questioning of the aforesaid accused and data retrieved from the digital devices seized from them at the time of their arrest had revealed the name of one Karen Hamidon as the user of mobile numbers +639300183542 and +639165017304 and as one of the most active ISIS operative based in the Philippines between 2014 and December 2015, the NIA said in its note.
She was running different Facebook pages, WhatsApp groups and Telegram channels for motivating, radicalizing and instigating her online associates from different countries including India to fight on behalf of ISIS in conflict zones. She was also in telephonic contacts with many other Indian nationals, the NIA also said. She was arrested by the National Bureau of Investigation, the Philippines on October 11, 2017, and charged with incitement to rebellion.
The NIA during its investigations into the various ISIS modules in India found that Hamidon was an active recruiter. Following the probe, the NIA sent out a letter rogatory or a judicial request to their counterparts in the Philippines. In the request, the NIA mentioned her address as Diego Shilang village in Taguig City, Metro Manila. Details of her phone numbers, her identity as Aisha al-Muslimah and her email id @KarenAishaHamidon were also sent out by the NIA.
The NIA is also on the lookout for several operatives and she could help track them, the NIA officer also informed. Her name cropped up when the NIA questioned two operatives from India. One was an Indian Oil Corporation manager, Sirajuddin who was arrested from Jaipur and the other was a 22-year-old computer engineer from Tamil Nadu, Mohammad Naseer who was recently deported from Sudan. The NIA states in a chargesheet that Hamidan had influenced many through social media channels and chat groups. It also said that she had also targeted Muslims in US, UK, UAE, Argentina, Bangladesh and Australia. She would target youth through groups which she called as Islam Q&A and Ummah Affairs.