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How Zahran Hashim converted the radical Islamists of South into violent Jihadists

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Out of the 100 odd radicalisation videos that the NIA has seized, nearly half of them were discourses by Hashim, officials tell OneIndia. Mubin had, in 2019, been interrogated by the NIA for his links with Hashim.

New Delhi, Nov 09: It is becoming increasingly clear that the Coimbatore blast by Islamists was driven by the thought of the Sri Lanka bomber Zahran Hashim. Most of the material that the National Investigation Agency has seized after Jameesha Mubin's car blew up near a temple in Coimbatore are related to the discourses by Hashim, a terrorist of the Islamic State.

The NIA has learnt that Hidayatullah, a friend of Mubin, had launched a Facebook page called Khalifa GFX along with one Mohammad Azharuddin, a local Islamic State leader. Hidayatullah after securing bail has been working at a fabrication unit and since has told the NIA that he is no longer interested in the extremist ideology. He had been arrested in 2019 for attempting to set up an Islamic State wing in Coimbatore. The NIA, however, continues to keep a close watch on him.

Zahran Hashim

Out of the 100 odd radicalisation videos that the NIA has seized, nearly half of them were discourses by Hashim, officials tell OneIndia. Mubin had, in 2019, been interrogated by the NIA for his links with Hashim. Mubin is believed to have had high regard for Hashim who was centric to several terror modules operating in South India.

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This is, however, not the first time that Hashim's name is cropping up in a terror modus operandi busted down south. His name had cropped up following the murder of special sub-inspector Wilson. He was murdered in a revenge act by the Islamic State.

During the course of the investigation, the NIA had learnt that this was the same module inspired by Hashim which had planned the murder of several Hindu leaders. The primary objective was to launch strikes targeting Hindus and then create communal tensions in various parts of the country.

The NIA further learnt that the operatives of this module had been inspired by the violent and extremist ideology preached by Hashim. They were shown speeches of Hashim on the social media. The NIA had also in 2020 conducted a raid in Coimbatore following which mobiles, laptops, documents and plans of terror strikes were seized.

Hashim was the ringleader of the bombers who carried out the Sri Lanka attack in 2019. Born in the Muslim coastal town of Kattankudy, in 1985 and in recent times this town has seen many visiting the Middle East in search of employment. This, in turn, resulted in increased Islamisation of the Wahhabi type, a scenario similar in Kerala.

Hashim was inclined towards this violent ideology and would often argue with his teachers that they were too liberal in reading the Quran.

After spending time in Sri Lanka and radicalising a large number of Muslim youth, he relocated to India and began interacting with Muslim groups. His main purpose was to radicalise the Muslim youth in the Southern states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. His main focus was on Malappuram District of Kerala and Coimbatore, Trichy, Thirunelvely, Vellore, Nagapattinam. Kanniyakumari and Ramanathapuram Districts in Tamil Nadu.

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During this period, he managed to penetrate the ideology of the Islamic State very deep. He would go around freely propagating the ideology and recruiting Muslims into the fold of the Islamic State. Until his visit, many were just backing and propagating the ideology. However, Hashim managed to change that and ensured that the Islamic State radicals practiced violent jihad. This resulted in the murders of several Hindu leaders and now the Coimbatore blast.

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