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Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma says “not targeting anyone”. (File Photo)Guwahati: Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma today alleged that the Popular Front of India (PFI) has created an “ecosystem” in the state, in which terror modules based in Bangladesh and linked to the Al Qaeda in Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) are being “harvested”. He held a press conference to share details of five alleged terror modules busted in the past five months. There have been a dozen arrests over the past few weeks alone, and a private madrasa has been demolished for being a hub of “jihadi” activity. “Assam is becoming hotbed of Islamic fundamentalists,” according to Mr Sarma, “I have a firm belief that Muslim population in Assam will help us in this fight. From today, we have to keep a close watch on madrasa teachers and Imams who are not from Assam.”A Bangladeshi national named Mohammad Suman, who had settled in Barpeta in Assam in 2018, is among those arrested since April. An Arabic teacher who worked as an Imam at a local mosque, he is alleged to be part of the first module. “Kingpins are some Bangladeshi nationals, a core team that is spread across Assam,” the chief minister said. “We are not targeting anyone. We are trying to protect India and lawful citizens of India,” he added. He blamed “certain so-called secular people who try to victimise Muslims” for creating “a scenario in which organisations like PFI intensify the victimhood”. The PFI, though not banned by the central government yet, has been named by police in a number of terror cases in multiple states. The organisation, on its website, lists “national integration, communal amity and social harmony” among its objectives.CM Sarma said PFI “brainwashes” young people. The terror modules in Assam are linked to a Bangladesh-based Ansarul Bangla Team, also known as Ansarul Islam, he added.He further claimed there are “sleeper cells of Ansarul Islam” which are “highly tech-savvy, using technology on mobile, tablets, laptops”. He said these cells held “several training camps” during the Covid pandemic. “Training included tradecraft, cyber security, and bomb-making.”



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