The Central Government on Thursday sounded a country-wide alert after an al-Qaeda video appeared in which the terror outfit threatened to carry out campaign in India.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh went into a huddle with top security officials as an initial assessment of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) found the video to be genuine.
An alert has been issued by the Home Ministry to all States and security agencies to take possible precautionary steps, Home Ministry officials said.
Security agencies feel the video could be an attempt by al-Qaeda to carry out fresh recruitments in the sub-continent as it stares at diminishing influence vis-a-vis the ISIS.
Singh, who discussed the issue with top security officials, later told reporters that the Prime Minister’s Office has been informed about the video.
Ministry officials said an assessment is being made about the presence of al-Qaeda in the country.
The IB, which constantly monitors the activities of terror outfits operating in the country and its neighbourhood, is expected to send the report in this regard within a day or two, officials said.
US media and intelligence agencies said on Thursday that al-Qaeda has established a new branch to wage “jihad” in India, “return the Islamic rule” and impose sharia in the Indian sub—continent.
The creation of the group called “Qaedat al-Jihad in the Indian Subcontinent” was announced by As Sahab, al-Qaeda’s official media outlet, in a lengthy video posted on social media outlets including You Tube.
Al-Qaeda is active in Afghanistan and Pakistan, but the group’s leader Ayman al Zawahiri said “Qaedat al-Jihad” would take the fight to India, Myanmar and Bangladesh.
Zawahiri said the group will defend the “vulnerable in the Indian subcontinent, in Burma, Bangladesh, Assam, Gujarat, Ahmedabad, and Kashmir…” and “your brothers in Qaedat al—Jihad did not forget you and that they are doing what they can to rescue you from injustice, oppression, persecution, and suffering.”