In the year 1996, the Students Islamic Movement of India had issued a statement. It said that democracy and secularism had failed to protect the Indian Muslims. The sole option now is to fight for a Caliphate, the SIMI had said.

The statement is eerily similar to the one put out by the Islamic State during the northeast Delhi riots. The ISIS too had said on its Telegram channel that it was time for the Indian Muslims to unite and overthrow the democratically elected government.

Playing into their hands:

SIMI has always thrived on communal riots to up its recruitments. SIMI and their radical Islamist friends have always relied on communal violence to enhance their reach. They look to empower Indian Muslims by taking them into their fold. They are often told that through violence the Muslims would have a sense of power.

The riots in Delhi is exactly what groups such as the ISIS and SIMI would have hoped for. These groups instigate the Muslims, indulge in violence and then recruit them by playing the victim card. Intelligence Bureau officials tell MyNation, it is the radical groups that instigate the Muslims in a bid to enhance their recruitments and then fight for setting up the Caliphate and then impose the Sharia law.

The build-up:

Since the late 2017, there has been a build up by radical Muslim outfits. The Muslim Defence Fund had been set up by the Lashkar-e-Tayiba to send in money through hawala channels. Further the ISIS began tapping into Delhi and began setting up modules.

In 2018, the National Investigation Agency had registered a case against Mufti Suhail and others on the allegation that they had formed an ISIS module in Delhi’s Amroha. The module was called the Harkat-ul-Harb-E-Islam or the Movement for War of Islam. The sole intention of the module was to establish a Caliphate by undertaking major attacks in Delhi.

The modules were being set up in Muslim dominated areas of Delhi. If one sees the kind of violence that broke out in Delhi last month, it becomes clear that these old modules formed over the years, were activated in quick time.  With the violence done, these modules would now be in the process of scouting for Muslims and taking them into their fold.

Offer yourself to Jihad:

The likes of Mufti Suhail were given a specific brief to get the attention of Indian Muslims and urge them to offer themselves to violent jihad. An NIA officer part of this probe said that Suhail would give sermons to Indian Muslims urging them to take up jihad. Wage Jihad against the infidels of India, he had said.

These persons had also recorded several videos, which showed the module members rehearsing and preparing for violent jihad. These videos were largely circulated in parts of northeast Delhi. Videos of alleged atrocities against the minorities too were circulated in large numbers. A clarion call to show solidarity with the Kashmiri terrorists was also in video and circulated.

The IB officer cited above says that such propaganda helps these radical outfits a great deal. It works for them during a situation that could turn communal. The highly radicalised minds thanks to such propaganda would come out on the streets and turn violent and this is exactly what their intention is, the officer says.

Pakistan and within:

The agencies are dealing with two fronts in the aftermath of the Delhi riots. One is the direct role by Pakistan in instigating the riots and the other is the modules from within which have played a key role. While both are clearly inter-connected, the agencies say that the bigger worry comes from those persons who have worked on their own. These self-radicalised persons are the most dangerous as they work out of their own will and not for money. Take for instance the case of Hyderabad born Mohammad Taufiq, who was shot dead in Kashmir. He had videotaped a testament in which he said that the Muslims must rise, because the mission of every Hindu is the elimination of every last Muslim.

Indian agencies say it is not only the modules in Delhi which are a worry. The Islamic State and SIMI have formed such modules in Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra too. These modules only go about propagating among the Muslims. In terms of attacks, they remain on sleep mode and they wake up when there is communal tension. They thrive on such situations as it unites the Muslims, and this makes it easy for them to recruit them into their fold.