There is “negligible” support from Indian youth for ISIS, Home Minister Rajnath Singh said today giving credit to families from minority communities for discouraging their children from getting influenced by the terror group.
Singh also assured the Lok Sabha that no innocent person from minority community would be taken into custody with regard to suspected terror activities and if there are such instances, these can be brought to his notice.
“Minority communities of our country are discouraging this … Parents are discouraging their children (from coming under influence of radicalism). I appreciate it,” Singh said during Question Hour amid thumping of desks by members.
Further, he said that minorities in many countries are encouraging ISIS.
Singh made the remarks while responding to queries about the threat of ISIS in India and steps taken by the government in this regard.
It is a fact that some of our youth followed ISIS but it is “negligible”, the Minister said.
Noting that the government took cognisance immediately after ISIS activities began to spread in different parts of the world, Singh ISIS has been prohibited.
“We are very much concerned about the activities of ISIS … We are taking all steps to contain it,” he said.
Besides, the government assured the House there is not much to worry about the prevailing situation.
Responding to a query on ISIS influence in India, Minister of State for Home Kiren Rijiju said the matter is “very, very sensitive” and the details cannot be discussed in the House”.
“There is nothing much to worry… We need not very much worry about the prevailing situation,” he noted.
A series of actions are being taken by the government including augmenting capacity of NSG and tightening of immigration control, among others.
Responding to a query on whether cases of youth from south India, especially Kerala, getting involved with ISIS has come to the notice of the government, Rijiju said there is no specific case to cite from south India with regard to the terror group.
With respect to ISIS, two cases have come in the public domain. Four youth from Maharashtra went to join the terror group and one has returned while another instance of a youth from Bangalore running a pro-ISIS twitter account has been found, the Minister said.
Singh said there is a need to strengthen cyber security to curb activities of such organisations through social media and other platforms.
The government would be setting up a committee to look into further strengthening the country’s cyber security, he said.
Rijiju said there are difficulties in getting to the bottom of issues related to ISIS and other terror groups using Internet and social media, among others.
“Capacity needs to be augmented,” he said.
To a separate query, Singh said no innocent individual from minority communities would be taken into custody.
Indian Union Muslim League leader E Ahamed said activities of ISIS are anti-Islamic and that his party would support efforts of the government against the terror group.
Minister of State for Home Haribhai Parathibhai Chaudhary said India’s hinterland continues to remain the main target of Pakistan-based terror groups and footprints of such outfits have been found in major terror attacks that happened in the country.
“The Indian hinterland continues to remain the prime focus of Pak-based terrorist outfits, particularly Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Indian Mujahideen (IM).
“Investigation into major terror attacks in India have disclosed footprints of Pak-based terrorist outfits or their Indian affiliates, most prominently the Indian Mujahideen,” he said.
In a written reply, he said that during the National Investigation Agency’s (NIA) probe into the Burdwan bomb blast case, it has been disclosed that the arrested/injured/ killed persons were members of a terror organisation of Bangladesh, Jamaat-ul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB).
The minister was responding to a query as to whether there are reports that foreign terrorist organisations, particularly from Pakistan and Bangladesh, are active in the country.
According to him, a multi-pronged approach, in co-ordination with state governments, to contain cross border infiltration has been adopted.
The steps include strengthening of border management through multi-tiered deployment along international borders, Line of Control and infiltration routes, construction of border fencing, improved use of technology, better intelligence and operational co-ordination and synergising intelligence flow to check infiltration.
Noting that there is effective co-ordination among intelligence agencies at the Centre and state levels, the government said inputs about possible threats are regularly shared with state governments.
“The Multi Agency Centre (MAC) has been strengthened and re-organised to enable it to function on 24×7 basis for real time collation and sharing of intelligence with other intelligence agencies and states, which ensures seamless flow of information between the state and the central agencies.
“This has resulted in busting of many terror modules, thus neutralising major terror attack plans,” he said.