26-year-old Ashfaq from Kerala’s Kasargod, a hotel owner, was one among the 21 people who went missing from the state in June 2016. Even as security agencies like the NIA were trying to find out to which country Ashfaq and the others had fled, Ashfaq has sent a message to his family more than a month after his disappearance.
The message, received last month, urged the family based out of Padanna in Kasargod, to read the blog Mujahir2015.wordpress.com for a better understanding of true Islam.
Ashfaq, like others in his group, had left India in search of dar-ul-Islam (House of Islam), and in the process is believed to have joined the Islamic State.
The blog Mujahir2015 which has posts in Malayalam and English is suspected to be run by an extremist based out of Saudi Arabia.
The blog has been publishing extremist content for a few months and is a vocal supporter of the Islamic State.
In the past, it has issued threats to a number of users belonging to a Facebook group of Malayalis called ‘Free Thinkers’ which includes well-known rationalist, EA Jabbar.
A quick glance shows that 80% of the traffic to the blog is from India.
Though the blog has been intensely debated at various points and even though Ashfaq has endorsed it to his family, Kerala police cyber and intelligence wings maintain that they know nothing of the blog.
Hemachandran, Director of State Intelligence, also denied knowledge of the concerned blog.
“No complaints have been filed against this blog in the past, nor has the nature of the content been brought to our notice,” he said.
How the blog repeatedly calls for Jihad
The blog tells people that they can support Jihad by not just fighting from the frontlines, but by funding Jihadists too.
Jihad is not just fighting the RSS, but it is Allah’s fight, the blogger says at one instance.
The blog emphasizes at various points that Jihad is the only means by which one could be close to Allah. The purpose of the blog, the writer says, is to guide those Indian Muslims who are unable to involve themselves in Jihad.
The tone is violent in most places with the blogger calling the relationship between a Muslim and a non-Muslim as one of war. The blog says that the war can only be stopped in a situation where there is an understanding between the two. A khafir’s (non-believer) blood is halaal. In the absence of a peace contract, it is acceptable to kill a khafir.
One of the blog posts targeted P Koya, leader of the Popular Front of India (PFI), who had raised questions on the validity of the self-proclaimed caliph, Abu Bakr al Baghdadi.
The blog is condescending to Indian Muslims. A true Muvahiddin cannot abide by the Indian constitution, since Allah has instructed true Muslims not to listen to khafirs, it says.
EA Jabbar, admin of the Facebook group 'Freethinkers', had told The News Minute, “We only considered it as comments made by some illogical fellow. But now that one of the missing youths has sent the link of the blog to his relatives, we are contemplating filing an official complaint in this regard.” True to his words, Jabbar filed a complaint with the Director General of Police and Kerala Chief Minister on Saturday.