The fringe factor of IM

Onlookers stand at the site of a bomb blast in Varanasi. Photo courtesy:

There is much talk about the re-grouping of the Indian Mujahideen which once again continued its tradition of sending out an email after the Varanasi blast. A similar letter but with less improvised English was also sent out after a shoot outside the Jama Masjid in Old Delhi a couple of days before the Common Wealth Games.

While investigators continue to study the pattern and the motives behind these incidents, a new yet disturbing trend that is cropping is that these attacks are being carried out by low level operatives of the dreaded IM.

Both the above mentioned incidents show that the attacks were not sophisticated in nature and did not cause the kind of impact which the IM normally would have caused.

The biggest operation that the IM had carried out were the back to back blasts at Bangalore, Ahmedabad and Delhi. Following this there was a massive crackdown on all their operatives such as Mansoor Pheerbhouy, Abdul Subhan and the rest. These persons who were appointed by former SIMI chief, Safdar Nagori who is now in custory were all given the chase. While Subhan managed to give the slip, Pheerbhouy was taken into custody. While the top rung was decimated to a large extent, there still remained people such as Riyaz Bhatkal and Salman who carried the organization forward. However after the blasts at Pune, the heat on these two men also grew and Bhatkal was forced to leave the country. Salman then became the most important person in the IM, but he too was nabbed while trying to get away from India. In addition to this, there was also a directive to Amir Reza one of the founders of the IM to stay underground since the numerous dossiers India sent to Pakistan post 26/11 takes his name.

These arrests and breaking down of the various modules of the IM created a huge vaccum within the group. In addition to this there was also a huge crackdown on their two most important modules at Pune and Uttar Pradesh.

Intelligence Bureau officials now tell that these boys who formed the top rung of the IM have a lot of sympathizers and well wishers. These people believe that their role models had been wronged by Indian security agencies. The formation of the IM was seen as a hope for a lot of people in the old parts of Delhi and areas such as Azamgarh and to see their role models being reduced to nothing by security agencies has not gone down too well.

Even as there is a strategy being planned out in Pakistan to revamp the IM, a second rung of this group comprising rookies decided to come together and carry forward the outfit. According to the IB, this group does not enjoy the patronage to the extent the earlier modules did. They are constantly trying to carry out attacks in order to get noticed. The ISI is yet to show keen interest in this group and feels that these boys lack the sophistication that their seniors had to carry out major attacks.

The IB says that this fringe group within the IM will continue trying to shake up the security system and with whatever little skills they have they will continue undertaking such operations.

If one reads the mails that are sent out by them, they focus largely on emotive issues such as the Batla House encounter, the Babri masjid demolition and also the Kashmir issue which is a sign of desperation to garner local support. However this group is directionless and lacks the sophistication that their bosses use to have. Their networking is not as good as it used to be before and neither do they have access to sophisticated machinery to carry out attacks with a huge impact. Under the garb of seeking revenge on half a dozen issues, this fringe group’s major intention is the seek attention of the ISI so that they help them grow into a bigger outfit. However the ISI on the other hand has other plans and is roping in bigger persons on the field such as Shafiq Khafa to build up a home grown Indian module. The ISI has roped in these men and has asked them to open up fresh modules and have a new outfit on the lines of the old Indian Mujahideen which had carried out a series of deadly attacks in India. The revamp of a home grown module would rely heavily on the modules of the HuJI which is strong in areas of UP and in addition to this they would also look to create new modules in the rest of India.

Read More: On attempts of regrouping terror forces

Author: Vicky Nanjappa

just a reporter

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