Speaking to the BBC, the Sri Lankan Army Chief Lt Gen Mahesh Senanayake, gave details on the terrorist attack in Sri Lanka and suspected movements around the region and also international links. “They have gone to India, they’ve gone to Kashmir, Bangalore, and they’ve travelled to Kerala state. Those are the information available with us. Not exactly, but definitely in some sorts of training or to make some more links towards the other organizations outside the country. Sri Lanka is a country which fought for twenty six years. The cases we faced at that time were more difficult and more terror than what we are facing today”.

Although I had highlighted the broader aspects of the Sri Lankan attacks in my opinion piece published in the Nation last month, there is a need to analyze the international linkages of these terror outfits as more information becomes available.

A report published by a leading newspaper in Pakistan, the News on 12 Oct 2015 had said that in late 2014, Indian National Security Adviser Ajit Doval had visited Syria and Iraq on the pretext of assisting Indian External Affairs Ministry (EAM) in evacuation of stranded Indians. However, it was reported that the secret visit was used to create contacts with the leaderships of extremist groups. Meanwhile, the Indian consulate in Kandahar was utilized by the RAW for creating coordination between the TTP and ISIS elements.

RAW has also erected the bogey of ISIS in Occupied Kashmir through a fake freedom fighter Zakir Musa who roams around the territory without much hindrance. As reported by Economic Times on 14 Jul 2018, stepping up its activity in India, Al-Qaeda has formally announced establishment of a new Kashmir-based terror group—Ansar Ghazwat-ul-Hind. The group will be led by the former Hizb-ul Mujahedeen commander, Zakir Musa. Why has the Indian military not captured or arrested Zakir Musa?

As stated by Hindustan Times report on 28 July 2017, the Hurriyat rejected the bogey of Zakir Musa and said groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda are “nonexistent” in the state and that there is “no role for these groups within our movement”. “Our movement is local in nature and indigenous in character,”.

Further clarifying through a joint statement issued by Hurriyat leaders, Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik said “Terrorism and the freedom movement are poles apart. Our movement is local in nature and indigenous in character”. The statement came a day after Musa was chosen as the head of Ansar Ghazwat-Ul-Hind, according to an announcement made by an al-Qaeda-affiliated propaganda channel.

If we connect the dots, a new pattern is emerging in India to use Islam to target Indian neighbourhood, as it is more convenient and easier than getting directly involved. ISIS did not exist in Afghanistan or South Asia , it was a joint venture of Indian RAW and Afghan NDS to bring it in Afghanistan with a hope that it will counter balance Taliban power and create leverage with India after US pull out.

Why soft states of South Asia like Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are being made a battle ground of ISIS is due to two factors. One, Chinese investment into Belt and Road has to be made more costly by creating instability in the countries who have already become active stake holders in it so that other South Asian countries will be indirectly warned about accepting Chinese investment. Two, India has to be propped up as the new Bogey against China in the Indo Pacific, Quad is one such idea. So India will be made into an epicenter of strategic operations of ISIS.

Indian NSA Doval had been a key figure suppressing Mizo Insurgency, in Sikkim, he played his role during the merger of state with India, and was inside Golden Temple in Amritsar in 1988, before Operation Black Thunder, posing as a Pakistani agent collecting critical intelligence. Doval spent seven years in Indian High Commission in Islamabad. Later remained involved in intelligence based operations in Occupied Kashmir. Doval has also been an open exponent of spreading terror in Balochistan through Indian proxies.

Adam Garrie also supports the idea of Indo Centric terror networks, while writing in a 27 April article in Eurasiafuture, he said, “when one learns that the terror group National Thowheed Jamaath (NTJ) named by Sri Lankan leaders as the culprit behind the attacks has been revealed by multiple sources as having its training base located in the same part of India’s Tamil Nadu that was once the training base of the anti-Sri Lankan LTTE terror group, a possible pattern of state sponsored terror begins to emerge. It is therefore looking increasingly likely that Zahran Hashim’s erstwhile unknown network has ties to India – ties whose nature will become ever more apparent over time”.

Adam Garrie further suggests, “already, the truth of who and what was behind the terror attacks is being muddied by a combination of open incompetence and cunning deviousness among media outlets that have rushed to judgment rather than attempt to connect the dots whilst waiting for hard evidence to appear. It is all but impossible that the small and obscure National Thowheeth Jama’ath (NTJ) could have pulled off the kind of attack that normally could only be accomplished by terror groups working directly with a state’s military-intelligence agency. It is of course of note that NTJ reportedly trains in the same part of India’s Tamil Nadu that was once home to the anti-Sri Lankan LTTE terror group – a group openly backed by India prior to 1987 whilst India’s RAW continued to covertly back LTTE even after the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi in 1991”.

Post Truth environment provides ample room to bluff the regional countries about the fakery of ISIS. Unfortunately, no one is asking India about Sri Lankan terrorist attacks, these poor terrorists who could not even pay their laundry bills were openly travelling and roaming in every nook and corner of India under the patronage of RAW’s special Division which handles Muslims terrorists as a proxies.

My sincere advice to Sri Lankan leadership and international community will be to not to miss forest for a tree, the India connection is the linchpin of the entire gambit of ISIS terror network in South Asia and it must be studied in more detail to expose Doval doctrine.

Why soft states of South Asia like Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are being made a battle ground of ISIS is due to two factors.

The author is a freelance journalist.adeelanaureen@gmail.com