A few days after three Hyderabad students who were allegedly on their way to join the terrorist group Islamic state (IS) were caught at the Nagpur airport, the youngsters claimed during interrogation that 'great injustice' had been done to their community.
According to a report in the Times of India, they reiterated their 2014 statement that the demolition of the Babri Masjid disturbs them to this day and that they wanted to take 'badhla' (revenge) for the destruction.
"For what has happened to Babri Masjid, we will take `badhla'. We have suffered a lot in this country. Jihad is the only thing we wanted to do in response. If not here, we will go to Srinagar or PoK or Afghanistan," the newspaper quotes the trio as telling the investigators.
Abdul Basith, Syed Omar Farooq Hussain and Majid Hasan, were allegedly influenced by the extremist ideology online and planned to join ISIS after taking a flight to Srinagar, and crossing over from the LoC into Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK). The trio first wanted to meet Hurriyat leaders in J&K and explore the possibility of waging `jihad' in Kashmir.
It was also reported that the three of them, were related to Syed Salahuddin, a former president of the banned Student Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) and two of them, Basith and Majid Hasan were already detained once last year, near the Indo-Bangla border in West Bengal, when they had made a similar plan to cross over to Bangladesh and then to Pakistan or Afghanistan.
While Basith was doing his B. Tech, Majid was a final year engineering student and Omar was a BSc (microbiology) student.
A report in The Indian Express adds that last year, Basith received funds for travel to join the IS from a Dubai-based, Indian-origin, alleged online recruiter for the IS. The â€śrecruiterâ€ť was subsequently identified as Adnan Damudi from Bhatkal in Karnataka, who is currently under detention in Dubai.
Meanwhile, the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the Hyderabad police on Tuesday moved a petition, seeking 10-day custody of Basith, Maaz and Omar.
"We need to know their motives and with whom they were in contact. With the expected retrieved data from tab used by the accused, we need to confront them to ascertain facts," Hyderabad joint commissioner of police (CCS) T Prabhkar Rao told TOI.