New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Ahead of the assembly polls in the state, the Intelligence Bureau (IB) has warned that Al-Qaeda is planning to carry out attacks in West Bengal using sleeper cells, said a media report.

According to a report by India Today, Al-Qaeda's India branch AQIS might try to "radicalise" Indian youths with the help of handlers from Pakistan to carry out attacks in India, especially in West Bengal.

The report quoted the National Investigation Agency (NIA) sources saying that several politicians from West Bengal can also be targetted by Al-Qaeda. Several recruitment centres have also been opened in Pakistan's Karachi and Peshawar to recruit Indians to carry out attacks in West Bengal.

Two months ago, the NIA had also arrested nine Al-Qaeda operatives from multiple locations in West Bengal's Murshidabad and Kerala's Ernakulam. The operatives were identified as Murshid Hasan, Iyakub Biswas, Mosaraf Hossen, Najmus Sakib, Abu Sufiyan, Mainul Mondal, Leu Yean Ahmed, Al Mamun Kamal and Atitur Rehman.

Following their arrest, the agency informed that terrorists were planning to carry multiple attacks across the country, adding that large quantity of incriminating materials including digital devices and literature used for making home-made explosive devices were recovered from the raids.

"NIA had learnt about an inter-state module of Al-Qaeda operatives at various locations in India including West-Bengal and Kerala. The group was planning to undertake terrorist attacks at vital installations in India with an aim to kill innocent people and strike terror in their minds," the NIA had said.

"As per the preliminary investigation, these individuals were radicalised by the Pakistan-based Al Qaeda terrorists on social media and were motivated to undertake attacks at multiple places including the National Capital Region," it further said, adding that these arrests have pre-empted possible terrorist attacks in various parts of the country.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma