Tough job hunt awaits IS returnees
TimesOfIndia 2015-09-18 05:27
NEW DELHI: Even though the Kerala police and intelligence agencies are not pressing charges against the youth deported from the UAE for being in touch with ISIS recruits, there is a realisation that with their identities now in the public domain, they could face difficulty in getting jobs in India.

While the home ministry and intelligence agencies are still discussing how to deal with their loss of livelihood, with all forced to give up their jobs in the UAE and staring at the bleak prospect of landing any employment here in view of their deportation, they feel it should serve as a deterrent to all other Indians, particularly those based in the Gulf, from indulging in similar dalliances on the social media with elements linked to ISIS.

Four of the youth deported on Tuesday from the UAE have reportedly been identified as Anas and Aromal Sadanandan (a Hindu) from Kollam, Riyaz from Calicut and Salim from Malappuram.

Home ministry sources here claimed that none of the deported Kerala youth were found to have any plans or aspirations to join the ISIS. "They were picked up by the UAE for being part of a group of friends, of which two became radicalized and left for Syria/Iraq to fight for the ISIS. They remained in touch with the two ISIS recruits, a Bangladeshi and an Indian national named Riyab-ul-Rahman, via social media and e-mail, often enquiring about their life in Iraq/Syria. The UAE tracked this online activity and detained the members of the group based in its territory," said a senior official.

While the Bangladeshi recruit is believed to have been killed, the fate of Rahman is not known. Sources said a case was registered by the Kerala police on Tuesday against Rahman at Karipur police station.

"As for the deported youth, it seems that that the UAE authorities, upon investigation, found that they had no plans to work for or promote ISIS. They were eventually cleared of the charges but UAE, as part of its no-tolerance approach towards residents reaching out to ISIS or its members via social media, decided not to let them stay back and got them deported to India," the official added.

Indian agencies, which got in touch with the deported youth as soon as they landed in India, have confined themselves to debriefing them and assessing their possible linkages to ISIS. "As part of our 'soft' approach towards youth who only show interest in online content related to ISIS or are in touch with active members but not inclined to join the outfit, we are not pressing charges against the deported Malayalees," said an intelligence officer.

But the officer did not rule out charging some other UAE-based Keralites in the future if found to be more actively "involved" with the ISIS. "The idea is to have a case-by-case approach. For instance, while we are not booking the deported Keralites, we have filed a case against lSIS recruiter Afsha Jabeen as she was wanted by India for trying to lure Indian youth. Similarly, Mehdi Masroor Biswas was using Twitter to actively promote ISIS and propagate its ideology, and was hence charged," the officer pointed out.
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