Areeb Majeed, the Kalyan youth who is currently in judicial custody in Mumbai’s Arthur Road Jail has revealed to interrogators in Mumbai that AIMIM leader and Telangana MLA Akbaruddin Owaisi was among the people whose speeches influenced him.
In his interrogation report, running into 76 pages, the 24-year-old talks about what drove him to the outfit, how he financed his travel to Syria, and his time as a suicide bomber for the IS.
Areeb Majeed said that he would listen to speeches of radical Muslim leaders such as Anjem Chaudhary and Saudi Arabia’s Muhammed Al Arifi, and would also follow speeches by AIMIM leader Akbaruddin Owaisi.
The others included Mohammed Hoblos from Australia, Imran Hosein, Australian preacher Musa Cerontonio, Abu Waleed, controversial preacher Anjem Chaudhary, Pakistani-born Tauseef ur Rahman, and Shaikh Abdullah Azzam.
Owaisi is known for his fiery and often controversial speeches, which are known to stoke communal tension between Muslims and Hindus.
He also said that e-books and mobile apps about Islam “had a great impact on me in developing my jihadi mindset”.
Majeed’s radicalization to join Isis came about after he established contacts with ‘recruiters’ through social media.
He has been charged under IPC Section 125 for waging war against an Asiatic Power in alliance With the Government of India.
Majeed and three of his friends from Kalyan, Mumbai, had fled to Iraq to join the ISIS last May, but he was the only one to return to India.
Since Majeed’s return, at least 20 Indians are known to have travelled to Iraq and Syria to join Isis, while many have been detained as they attempted to leave the country.
Some Indians have also been deported from Gulf nations for supporting Isis on social media. However, Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh has in the recent past dismissed Isis influence in India.