A couple with alleged links to the Islamic State (IS) has been arrested from the Okhla area in Delhi. Police have identified the duo as Jahanjeb Sami (36) and Hina Bashir Beg (39), and say that they are linked to the Khorasan module of IS.
The arrests were made early on Sunday morning and a lot of literature allegedly related to ‘jehad’ has been recovered from the duo. Police also seized four mobile phones, one laptop and one external hard drive from them and are currently scanning the devices for more information on other members of the module. An FIR has been registered against both at Jamia Nagar police station.
DCP (Special Cell) Pramod Singh Kushwah told Indian Express that the couple hails from Srinagar’s Shivpora and that they “have links with the Khorasan module of IS (ISKP)”. Police also accused Sami, who works with a private firm and has experience in web design, of helping publish the February edition of IS magazine Sawt al Hind (Voice of India), adding “further evidence is being gathered”. Kushwah added, “They were propagating the banned terrorist outfit’s ideology of hatred against non-Muslims… They were also inciting Muslims to take up a violent struggle against the State, and against the CAA.” He also said, “During interrogation, it was found that the couple had created several anonymous IDs on social media platforms such as Telegram, Facebook, Threema, Surespot, Instagram and Twitter.”
The couple were allegedly instigating protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and it is this element that can have problematic implications for civil society groups and individuals belonging to the minority community. As it is minorities have borne a disproportionate brunt of the violence that spread across Delhi from February 23, 2020. Then there is the element of ‘othering’ and constant ‘dehumanisation’ using terms like ‘termites’ and ‘infiltrators’ by some of the most powerful political leaders and ministers in the country. This has already led to widespread alienation of minorities, now to accuse someone of ‘IS links’ for allegedly instigating anti-CAA protests might be perceived as an act of harassment and even persecution by members of already distressed communities.