Islamic State woman-recruiter gets 7-year rigorous imprisonment

Special NIA Court in Kochi has sentenced Yasmin Muhammad Zahid, an Islamic State activist, to seven-year rigorous imprisonment and imposed a fine of Rs 25,000 for her involvement in recruiting youths to the dreaded Islamist organisation.

Yasmin, found guilty in the case of recruiting 15 Kerala youths of Kasaragod to IS, hails from Bihar. The youths were reported to have migrated to Afghanistan in 2016 to fight a war against infidels. This is the first case NIA has registered in Kerala involving Islamic State. She awarded jail term under 120 B of IPC and the penalty under 125 of IPC. She was facing trial under relevant sections of UAPA.

Yasmin was arrested from Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi, on July 30, 2016 on her way to Kabul. Her child was with her during her arrest. She is the second accused in the NIA case; Rashid Abdulla, the first accused and her husband, is said to be in Nagarhar province, Afghanistan. The NIA probe established that Abdullah had drafted several youths from Kasaragod to join ISIS. They were persuaded to leave India along with their families.  He organized several study sessions for grooming at Kasaragod and other places. Abdulla raised funds and transferred them to Yasmin. The case was initially probed by the Kerala Police; it was re-registered in the NIA police station, Kochi on August 24, 2016. The court examined 52 prosecution witnesses, one defence witness and 50 material objects.

NIA has already sought the Interpol’s assistance to nab the other accused who have fled the country. They are 14 in number. Yasmin is the second wife of Rashid Abdulla.

Of late, Kerala has emerged as the safe haven for all anti-national elements. The CPI(M)-led Left Democratic Front and Congress-led United Democratic Front maintain a soft approach towards extremist and terrorist outfits and their ideologies. People of Kerala have been witnessing this since the last several decades.