A magistrate’s court here today sent a youth arrested by the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad for allegedly recruiting boys here for the ISIS to a children’s remand home, as his lawyer claimed he was just over 16.
“The court remanded him to remand home and asked the ATS and the defence to adduce (more) evidence about his age,” an ATS officer said.
When the boy was produced before the court, his lawyer Chirag Shah showed his SSC certificate to establish that he was 16 years and 8 months old.
ATS, on the other hand, produced electoral roll from the website of Election Commission where his age is shown as 20.
The magistrate then remanded the ‘boy’ to children’s home and directed the defence and the prosecution to satisfy the court on the point of his age at next hearing on February 8.
The prosecution said the accused was second-in-command of ISIS in India and was assigned the task of recruiting.
He ran two safe houses—one in Mumbai and another in Goa—for the training of recruited youths, it said.
The accused was arrested last week from Kushinagar in Uttar Pradesh. ATS suspects he allegedly radicalised and guided Ayaz Sultan who left the country last month, reportedly to join ISIS.
The ATS has registered a case against Ayaz, former BPO employee. Ayaz and three other youths reportedly left home to join ISIS after being allegedly radicalised by the accused.
Two of them—Noor Mohamad and Wajid Shaikh—returned in last week of December.