March 18, 2017
NEW DELHI: The probe into the role of the so-called Islamic State in train accidents has set investigators on the trail of Satya Sandesh Foundation (SSF), an NGO that claims to be dedicated to Islamic preaching, and an IS recruit Ahsan, possibly the first person born Shia but working for the Sunni group.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) is probing how activists of the Kanpurbased foundation, linked to IS members behind the Bhopal-Ujjain train blast, promptly reached the site of the Kanpur train accident on November 20, 2016.
During investigations into the March 7 train blast, the NIA discovered that Ahsan (see graphic), who attended a July 2016 meeting at a plot owned by the Kanpur-Lucknow module's `amir' Atif Muzaffar near Kanpur, was the son of an SSF follower.
Ahsan opting for Ahle Hadith is unusual as Shias have been locked in a bitter armed conflict with IS in West Asia with Sunni hardliners, who regard them as non-Muslims.
According to an investigator, though SSF officially claims to propagate Quranic teachings, it is known to work actively on conversions to Islam. Some Hindus have been converted through SSF, he added.
What has really baffled the NIA is that SSF activists swiftly reached the site of the Patna-Indore Express derail ment last year. "It needs to be verified how they came to know about the accident so quickly ," said an officer.