A court in Kochi on Monday awarded life imprisonment to a man who was convicted for intentionally and knowingly joining Islamic State and later proceeding to Iraq to further the activities of the dreaded terror group.
The special National Investigation Agency court also imposed a fine of Rs 2,10,000 on Subahani Haja Moideen, a Keralite, who was arrested by the NIA in 2016 following a crackdown in Tamil Nadu with the help of central security agencies and other state police.
The court on Friday had found him guilty under IPC Sections 120(B) (Criminal Conspiracy), Section 125 (waging war against Asiatic power in alliance with the Government of India) and Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, Section 20 (Punishment for being member of terrorist gang or organisation).
The court had also convicted him under UAPA Section 38 (Offence relating to membership of a terrorist organisation) and 39 (Offence relating to support given to a terrorist organisation).
However, Moideen was found not guilty for an offence under IPC section 122 (Collecting arms, etc, with intention of waging war against the Government of India).
The convict was sentenced to undergo imprisonment for life under section 20 of the UAPA.
Pronouncing the quantum of punishment, the court said that the act of the convict is a blot on the cultural conscience of the state.
"It is also a blow to its pride as one of the most progressive societies in the nation," NIA court judge P Krishna Kumar said.
"It is a painful realisation that youthful people are indoctrinated by such extremist ideologies and they are even prepared to renounce the eternal tie with their mother country, seemingly on their wishful thought that they
could embrace their own paradise in that attempt.
"Let us hope that Subahani Haja, once duly reformed, will tell them that the best rule of paradise must be the rule of law preserved by the Constitution of India," the court said.
According to the chargesheet filed by the National Investigation Agency, Moideen, hailing from Idukki district, intentionally and knowingly became an Islamic State member in April 2015.
To further the activities of Islamic State, he proceeded to Iraq during April-September 2015, joined the terrorist organisation and waged war against the Government of Iraq, an Asiatic Power in alliance with the Government of India, the NIA had said in its charge sheet.
The case was registered by NIA in October, 2016, based on credible information that certain youths had entered into a conspiracy and were making preparations to carry out terrorist attacks in India in order to further the
objectives of proscribed terrorist organization Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS)/Daish.
On October 3, 2016, searches were conducted at the house of Moideen in Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu, which led to seizure of material indicating his travel to the theatre of conflict in West Asia and he was arrested on
Subsequent investigation revealed that he had exited India in April 2015 and joined the Islamic State in Iraq, where he had fought for the terrorist organisation.
In September 2015, he returned to India and continued activities in support of the terrorist organisation.
He had also attempted to procure explosive material from Sivakasi in Tamil Nadu to make IEDs,according to the NIA.