Two men get seven years in jail for recruiting and fundraising for ISIS in India

A special Delhi court sentenced two men to seven years in jail for recruiting and raising funds for ISIS.

A special Delhi court today awarded a seven-year jail term to two men after they pleaded guilty to conspiring to raise funds and recruiting people for ISIS.

The accused Azhar-ul-Islam (24) from Jammu and Kashmir and Mohammed Farhan Shaikh (25) from Maharashtra had said last year they were "remorseful of the acts alleged against them."

"There is no prior criminal record against them and they want to join the mainstream and want to be productive for the society and want to rehabilitate themselves," their lawyer MS Khan had said.

The two had been charged for alleged offenses of criminal conspiracy (section 120B of IPC) and under provisions of Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA). The National Investigation Agency had registered the case against them in January 2015, alongwith a third accused 36-year-old Adnan Hassan.

According to the NIA, Hassan and Shaikh had been visiting the UAE frequently for jobs since 2008 and 2012 respectively. Islam joined them in the UAE in July 2015.

In its chargesheet, the NIA claimed that the accused, in connivance with other known and unknown associates, had hatched a criminal conspiracy to propagate ideology, recruit persons, raise funds and facilitate the travel of the recruited persons to Syria to join the ISIS and further its activities.

The NIA said the accused had created multiple email IDs, used multiple mobile numbers obtained from their associates from different countries, formed various online forums and groups on Facebook, WhatsApp, Kik, VKontakte, Viber and Skype and invited and associated with "like-minded" persons, residents of different countries.

"The accused had formed a terrorist gang and acted as a frontal group of the ISIS and incited, motivated, invited and facilitated people of different nationalities to leave their respective countries and travel to Syria to join, support and further activities of the ISIS," NIA said in its chargesheet.

"They had voluntarily advocated and professed to be the supporters and members of the ISIS and actively supported, invited support from others, propagated and promoted unlawful activities and terrorist activities of the ISIS by exhorting, inciting, luring and influencing others to become members of this organisation by disseminating incriminating contents including sharing comments, pages, videos, images, literature and openly endorsing, justifying and glorifying the terrorist acts of the ISIS," the chargesheet said.

"They had also raised, collected and received funds in the UAE and transferred it to their associates in India, the Philippines and Tunisia to facilitate their travel to Syria to join ISIS," according to the NIA.

(With inputs from PTI)