Nizamabad karate teacher arrested for training young Muslims to riot
Telangana police have arrested a karate instructor, a 52-year-old man named Abdul Khader, who was found to be training young Muslims from both Telugu states in violent anti-social activities including stone-throwing, rioting and murders.
The arrest comes at a time when the nation was still reeling from the beheading of a tailor in Udaipur for allegedly supporting BJP leader Nupur Sharma’s comments on Prophet Mohammad.
A resident of Autonagar, Nizamabad, North Telangana, Khader is known for his association with the controversial Indian People’s Front (PFI) organization. Police also seized from his home, from where suspicious activity was reported, PFI banners, bamboo batons, nuns, stationery, reading materials and books, an audio system and several tickets of buses and trains. The books were anti-Indian and anti-Hindu activities. PFI activists from Nizamabad have already been arrested.
Khader attracted young Muslim men from poor families from various districts of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. He would then enroll them in intense physical training to transform them into religious fighters.
“According to what he revealed, the purpose was to create hardline Islamic fundamentalists and to keep them ready for anti-social activities, acts of violence against people of other faiths to create unrest in the country. taught them how easily a person can be killed with a knife or with a truncheon etc,” A Venkateshwar, deputy police commissioner of Nizamabad, told DH.
In addition to physical training, the youngsters also received legal knowledge, the ACP said.
Venkateshwar, who is also the investigator in the case, said these Khader camps lasted from three days to a week, during which young Muslims and PFI activists from all over Telangana as well as remote districts of the ‘Andhra Pradesh such as Kurnool and Nellore also participated.
Police suspected that the training modules had been operational for at least a year now; they feared that more than 200 young men had already been radicalized. “Based on information gathered from Khader, we are looking for his associates and those he has trained,” police said.
Khader was convicted under sections 120A and 120B (criminal association) and 153A (promotion of religious enmity) of the Indian Penal Code, and section 13(1)(b) of the illegal activities (prevention). He was then sent to police custody for 14 days.
The district was put on high alert after the intent of the terrorist activities was revealed, police said. Banned in states such as Jharkhand, the PFI is seen as the successor to the banned Islamic Student Movement of India.