Assam chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma | File photo

Assam government is preparing a standard operating procedure for new imams who visit the state, chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said on August 22.

The move comes after the arrest of several cadres of “jihadis” and busting of several modules of al-Qaida in Assam in the past few months.

Interacting with the media, chief minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that under the proposed SOP, people would be requested to inform the police soon after any imam or preacher comes to their mosque of madrasa for religious purpose or teaching.

Urging the people, especially those of the Muslim community, to inform the police if they witness a stranger in their locality serving as imam of a mosque or teacher of a madrassa, Sarma said that the police would verify their antecedents.

“This is (informing the police about the imam) not mandatory for the local imam,” he said.

Claiming that the Muslim community in Assam has been helping the authorities to capture the “jihadis”, Sarma, who also holds the home portfolio, said that the government is preparing a portal to register the names of imam coming from outside.

He said that two days back two imams have been arrested for having “jihadi” links and one of the detainees is a kingpin of this group and five more such “jihadis” yet to be arrested.

Sarma had earlier said that the Assam police busted several modules of the al-Qaida in the Indian subcontinent and the Bangladesh-based Ansarullah Bangla Team that were active to radicalise the youth of the state.

He said that many cadres of the extremist outfits were arrested from some mosques and madrassas in recent times.

“Both the people and the law enforcing agencies have to keep a close vigil on the imams and the madrassa teachers, especially those who are strangers,” he said.

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