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High-level Home Ministry meet to counter ISIS

  • Hiral Patel
  • August 1, 2015
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The Union Home Ministry, worried about the rapid radicalization among youth and the growing ISIS appeal in the young Indian mind, called a high-level meeting of home secretaries and DGP’s of various states to chalk out a strategy to counter it.

The meeting will be chaired by Union Home Secretary LC Goyal in the national capital and will discuss efforts being made by the counter the militant group’s ideologies.

De-radicalization of youth swayed by the idea of jihad is the way forward for combating the ISIS threat in India. The Ministry of Home Affairs after deliberations with state government and agencies like Intelligence Bureau (IB) and Research and Analysis wing has formulated this strategy of not going for knee-jerk arrests in cases of Indian youth getting attracted by ISIS.

Attraction towards radical ideology of any religion is a matter of concern. We will have to put in place a system as there are inputs that many Indian youths are attracted to different extremist ideologies, including the ‘Caliphate’ promoted by ISIS,” a home ministry official said.

Counter-radicalization efforts would include counseling of youths, convincing community elders to persuade the younger generation to not get influenced by any extremist ideology, monitoring of social media sites and taking of preventive steps.

DGPs and home secretaries of a dozen states — Jammu and Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Kerala, Assam, Punjab, West Bengal and Delhi (Commissioner of Police) will take part in the meeting, the official added.

In Telangana, 17 youths have been prevented from travelling to Syria and, recently, four from Maharashtra were also stopped from travelling to the Middle-East. None of the youths were arrested, they were kept under surveillance. They went through counseling and are now reportedly living normal lives.

Maharashtra and Telangana have already put in place a model for dealing with IS-related cases. While there have been arrests in some cases, agencies realized that arrest should not be the first option.

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