Islamisation of Assam and why Pakistan wants to make it a crowded terror market
New Delhi, Sep 17: The arrest of Qamer uz Zaman, a Hizbul Mujahideen operative originally hailing from Assam has led investigators to probe a pan-India network of the outfit.
Zaman was arrested at Kanpur in Uttar Pradesh, where he was suspected to have plotted a bomb blast at a temple. However further investigation led the arrest of three more operatives of the Hizbul from Hojai in Assam.
All the arrested persons worked together and were in the process of recruiting more persons. These persons were given as little as Rs 30,000 to undertake a recruitment drive in Assam, which is volatile considering the large number of radical Islamic groups that operate over there.
Assam has a crowded terror market:
Assam has over the years become a hub for radical Islamic groups. Several terror groups prefer this state as it shares a long international border with Bangladesh, Myanmar and Bhutan.
The big groups such as the Hizbul Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Tayiba have worked in this state and it gets its local support from several radical outfits that operate in Assam.
For instance there are groups such as the Muslim United Liberation Front of Assam, Muslim Liberation Tigers of Assam, People's United Liberation Front and the Islamic Liberation Army of Assam which operate here.
These local groups have strong networks both within the state as well along the border areas. They have flouted the weak borders and brought in several thousands of illegal immigrants into the state. Bringing in the illegal immigrants has served their purpose on several fronts. A few political parties have over the years used them as a vote bank while the others have been embedded into the terror network.
The missing cases:
With these arrests the Assam police are now checking into a long list of missing persons. Zaman had left his home in 2012 and began working at a garment shop in Kashmir. Following that he went missing and his family had even lodged a missing complaint.
Police sources tell OneIndia that this is not an isolated case. Many have gone missing after leaving Assam for work. Such cases have been reported from Kashmir and also the Middle East. The police suspect that most of these persons may have joined the ranks of terror.
Intelligence Bureau officials say that those boys from Assam who have gone missing and have joined terror groups will be sent back to their home state over a period of time. Their brief would be to further the activities of groups such as the Lashkar-e-Tayiba and Hizbul Mujahideen in Assam, which has over the years become a happy hunting ground for terrorists.
The IB has said that security agencies would have to tread very carefully in the days to come. There has to be constant monitoring of those persons whose names are missing in the NRC.
Such persons would be very vulnerable and could be picked up easily by terror groups. The IB warns that several local terror groups have already been instructed to rope in such persons and form a formidable force in Assam.
Terror groups based out of Kashmir and Pakistan have already sent out signals to their partners in Assam and other northeastern states to launch a fresh recruitment drive. These groups have been using the Rohingya Muslims and the NRC issue to boost up the recruitments in a big manner.