Raids In Kerala Amid Probe Against ISIS Unit, 3 Suspects Questioned

New Delhi: 

Three residents of Kerala are being questioned by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) as part of a probe against alleged ISIS terrorists responsible for the April 21 bomb attacks in Sri Lanka. According to sources, they were taken into custody after the probe agency conducted raids at their residences in Kasaragod and Palakkad districts.

The three, who are said to have been in contact with the main accused in the blasts, are currently being questioned by NIA officials.

According to a press release, NIA officials recovered a number of devices such as mobile phones, phone SIM cards, memory chips, pen drives and handwritten notes in Arabic and Malayalam from their possession. DVDs of religious speeches and books authored by controversial preacher Dr Zakir Naik were also found during the raids.

According to sources, the houses raided in Kasaragod belonged to Aboobackar Siddique and Ahammad Arafath. The NIA has issued a notice asking them to appear at its Kochi office for further questioning on Monday. The identity of the third suspect is yet to be confirmed.

Over 250 people were killed in a series of suicide bombings carried out by terrorists at churches and high-end hotels across Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday. After terror group ISIS owned up to the attacks, security forces detained 100 people — including foreigners from Syria and Egypt — and carried at an armed raid on a safe house in Ampara’s Sainthamaruthu that ended in the death of at least 15 suspected terrorists.

The Sri Lankan authorities have also outlawed two terror groups — the National Thawheedh Jamaath and Jamathei Millathu Ibrahim — suspected to have a direct hand in the attacks.

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