In the first such verdict against accomplices/members of the Islamic State (IS), a Delhi special court today awarded seven-year jail terms to two IS men after they pleaded guilty.
District Judge Amar Nath convicted Azhar-ul-Islam (24) from Jammu and Kashmir and Mohammed Farhan Shaikh (25) from Maharashtra after both pleaded guilty of conspiring to raise funds and recruiting people for the IS.
According to Business Standard, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) had arrested three suspected IS sympathisers in January last year on charges of involvement in a conspiracy to identify, motivate, radicalise, recruit and train potential members for the international terrorist group. The trial of a third accused, Adnan Hassan will continue separately. Much of the trio’s activities took place when they were in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
Both of the convicts have confessed and pleaded that they were remorseful over their actions. “We want to return to the mainstream and be productive for society and want to rehabilitate ourselves,” they said, adding that their guilty plea was made without any pressure, threat, coercion or undue influence.
The judge observed, “No doubt, they were members of a terrorist organisation and got themselves associated with their activities. That may be their folly either on account of misguidance or lack of maturity of mind and circumstances … [The Court] needs to take into account positive aspects from their act of pleading guilty. It seems the convicts have realised their mistakes and are willing to repent for their acts and deeds … In that case, the convicts should get an opportunity to reform themselves and be a good citizen of this country. Keeping in view the aforesaid facts and circumstances, I am of the considered opinion that there is necessity of showing some leniency while imposing punishment upon the convicts but at the same time, it should not be a wrong message to the society.”
The Logical Indian community welcomes the decision of Delhi High Court and applauds NIA for arresting ISIS accomplices.