16 involved with Hizb ut-Tahrir under IB, Telangana police lens

Hyderabad: The Intelligence Bureau was keeping a close watch on the 16 persons who were detained in a predawn operation in Madhya Pradesh and Telangana for allegedly maintaining links with an International radical organization.

The agency in coordination with the counter-intelligence wing of the Telangana police and Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) of Madhya Pradesh police detained 11 persons in MP and five others in Hyderabad city of Telangana.

The Intelligence agencies are keeping a close watch on the people who were directly or indirectly in contact with the members and sympathizers of Hizb-ut-Tahrir (HuT), an alleged terrorist group after the arrest of Ziyavudeen Baqavi of Tamil Nadu was arrested in February 2022 for allegedly radicalising vulnerable Muslim youths to establish an Islamic state and enforce a constitution written by a radical preacher.

“The case pertained to the conduct of secret ‘bayaan’ classes by members of HuT, an offshoot of ISIS, a proscribed terror organisation, for radicalizing youths to establish an Islamic state or caliphate and enforce the constitution written by radical Islamic preacher Taqi al-Din al-Nabhani,” the NIA had stated in a press release issued then. Al-Nabhani is the founder of HuT.

Three of the persons who were detained in the operation are revert-Muslims. One of them is well known for his Islamic classes and actively involved in helping new revert Muslims in administrative matters. He was also on the radar of the Telangana police and central law enforcement agencies.

According to various agencies, HuT has avoided global scrutiny radar while spreading its ideology and was becoming a more dangerous ‘terrorist group’ than ISIS. India had inputs from global security agencies about its expansion plans. HuT is alleged to have a support base in nearly 50 countries.

Founded in Jerusalem in 1952 and headquartered in London, the group has branches in Central Asia, Europe, South Asia, and Southeast Asia, particularly in Indonesia, where it has managed to garner great influence, say agency reports.

In South Asia, HuT has a significant presence in Pakistan and Bangladesh. HuT claims to have organised a demonstration in 2010 at Batla House in Delhi in protest against Israel’s alleged atrocities. This was said to be one of the last reported HuT activities in India, according to security experts. The detained individuals are being questioned for more details.