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Top IS recruiter arrested from Bhatkal; was using Twitter, Telegram to propagate IS ideology | India News

NEW DELHI: A highly radicalised terror recruiter and motivator, who was using multiple pseudo identities on encrypted chats to recruit impressionable Indian youths with Islamic State propaganda and motivating them to wage ‘jihad’ against the Indian State, was arrested by NIA in Bhatkal, Uttar Kannada district, Karnataka on Friday in the ‘ISIS-Voice of Hind’ case.
Jufri Jawhar Damudi alias Abu Hajir al Badri was under the radar of Central intelligence agencies since his link to content related to 2020 Delhi riots, published in ‘Voice of Magazine’ digital ISIS propaganda magazine and another IS-linked media, cropped up. Online surveillance revealed that a man by the pseudonym Al Badri was operating a Twitter handle, where he would catch like-minded persons and persuade them to shift to encrypted Telegram channels on which he would not only circulate ‘Voice of India’ magazine but also seek content for the magazine. He was also translating Voice of India into south Indian languages for a wider reach.
According to sources, Al Badri, whose real identity has not been confirmed as Jufri Jawhar Damudi, was also scouting for funds from Indian youths he had radicalised via Telegram etc. It is believed that the funds were possibly being collected with a view to buying arms and explosives for targeted attacks against “non-believers” and the Indian State in general. He is said to have motivated gullible Muslim youths to source arms and generate publicity for IS in India by making violent videos including that of beheadings.
Damudi is the younger brother of Adnan Hasan Damudi who was arrested for ISIS related activities in 2016 and is currently under detention in a separate NIA case
Sources said Al Badri was found to be in touch with top leader of ISJK/IS Khorasan Qasim Khorasani alias Umar Nisar, arrested earlier in the same case from J&K. Khorasani was initially believed to be based in Khorasan province of Afghanistan but persistent tracking revealed his location as Jammu and Kashmir.
Similarly, it was believed by the agencies for a long time that Al Badri was in the Afghanistan-Pakistan region. He was a smart operator who masked his identity and location well. Recently, agencies were starting to suspect that he was based in India, possibly in Karnataka or J&K. In the last 24-48 hours, it became clear that he was located in Bhatkal and the NIA, with the assistance of Karnataka police, swooped down upon him.
During Friday’s searches in Bhatkal — which had gained prominence as the place of origin of Indian Mujahideen masterminds Riyaz Bhatkal and Yasin Bhatkal — a large number of digital devices such as mobile phones, hard disks, SD cards etc have been seized.
The ISIS-Voice of Hind case was registered June 26, 2021 by NIA. NIA had earlier conducted multiple searches in J&K on July 11, 2021 and arrested 3 accused namely Umar Nisar alias Qasim Khorasan, Tanveer Ahmad Bhat and Rameez Ahmad Lone, all residents of Achabal, Anantnag.
Sources said Al Badri’s recruitment net may extend as wide as J&K, Karnataka, Kerala, UP and Maharashtra and may involve at least 20-30 youths.

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