IB vs Wahabi: The war against saudi funding
New Delhi, June 29: The crackdown on the NGOs which have been getting foreign funds will also include the finances that come in from Saudi Arabia and Qatar into India, a home ministry official informed.
The government which has cracked down on several NGOs for not making public the foreign contributions has also identified several NGOs which have been getting funds from Saudi Arabia and Qatar in a bid to spread radical extremism in India.
While cables by Wikileaks clearly suggest that Saudi Arabia was attempting to gain more influence in India, an internal document of the Intelligence Bureau clearly specified that nearly Rs 1,700 crore had been pumped in to spread Wahabi preaching in India.
Dealing with Saudi funds into India:
Dealing with funding from Saudi is harder when compared to the funding into other NGOs. Breaking the Saudi funds into India would mean dealing with the hawala network. It has been found that a chunk of the funds that land into India are through Kerala which probably has the highest hawala remittance.
The Intelligence Bureau has identified some NGOs which have been getting funds from Saudi Arabia and Qatar and have placed them under the watch list. However the bigger focus would be on the remittance through the hawala channels, IB officials say.
The IB is also keeping close tabs on those who have been visiting India from Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and also Qatar. Over the years some of these hate preachers have had a free run as a result of which they have managed to set up shop.
The estimated number of Wahabi preachers who visited India between 2011 and 2014 was 25,000.
This figure has come down a lot now says an intelligence bureau official. The visa norms are not that simple and each one of these visiting scholars and preachers will have give details about the event they are going to address.
There would be officials present at the venues where addresses are made. In addition to the cash and also all other material being carried needs to be declared, the officer further informed.
Identifying the problem areas:
Documents with the Home Ministry would show that several institutions had applied for Saudi funds. The funding was applied under the garb of donations, the documents would also reveal.
Such NGOs have been found the most in Kerala followed by Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra and West Bengal. It should however be noted that the entry of Saudi hate speakers was first seen in Jammu and Kashmir. Funds have come in under the garb of funding an Arts college in Mallapuram, and a nursing college near Palghat in Kerala.
Further funds into Uttar Pradesh were roped in to finance a centre for women and also three Madrasas.
Treading with care:
India does realize the long term problem it would cause if the issue is not dealt with immediately. One got to witness the recent incident in Tunisia which was an attempt to destablise the tourism industry. However the larger picture of this attack was that it was an aim at hitting at democracy and the ISIS styled attack was funded by Qatar, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.
India also realizes that if there Saudi funds continue to flow in to propagate Wahabi culture, then there would be clashes in the country. The clashes would however be between the moderate Muslims vs the Wahabis or their followers.
India on the other hand would also want to take note of the fact that it does need Saudi Arabia to wage its battle against terror. Several terrorists who originate from India have taken shelter in Saudi Arabia. Take the case of Abu Jundal or Zabiuddin Ansari, one of the executors of the 26/11 attack. He had taken shelter in Saudi Arabia but was extradited at India's request.