Sudipto Sen’s directorial ‘The Kerala Story’ managed to grab the headlines just after its trailer launch. The movie, based on the bitter reality of forceful conversions and Islamic radicalization in southern states, drew a lot of flak from the people of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. As a result, petitions were filed in the Court to put a ban on the movie. However, the Court dismissed them all, and the film was released on the scheduled date and received praises from a wide section of the society.
While the movie doesn’t have substantial data to back up the numbers stated, it’s no lie that Kerala has been under the scanner for quite some time now for the rising Islamic radicalism in the state. For over a decade now, women have been brainwashed into accepting the religion of Islam after being pursued by Muslim men for marriage. Hindu and Christian girls are lured by Muslim men at the behest of their religious preachers. They marry these girls and convert them to Islam, and then they are sent to countries like Iraq, Syria, and Afghanistan, among others, where they are trained to be either terrorists or sold off as sex slaves.
Most of them are recruited for ISIS, who happen to pick most of the victims from South India because of the South’s strong labour ties with the Persian Gulf, where most of the people from the states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu flock for work and it’s there that these terrorists have their base camps set up to lock their targets. According to the ORF research, most of India’s IS recruiters came from Kerala, accounting for 40 of the 180 to 200 cases across the country. These terrorist organizations train people to brainwash the gullible youth, and then on returning to India, they target the women to spread this network.
Over the years, many distressed families have come forward to share their stories but haven’t been of much help because once you have been recruited into a terrorist organization, it’s hard to get your previous life back. The ones who opposed the conversion were tortured, and their families were threatened. But the surprising fact is that when offered help, many of these converted women refused to return to their previous lives. They became too influenced by Islam’s teachings to return to their pre-conversion life.
Love Jihad is not merely a concept in Kerala but a harsh reality. Many Kerala men and women are said to have joined the ISKP (Islamic State of Khorasan Province) in recent years. In 2009, Kerala High Court had asked the government to frame laws to stop love Jihad. The banned terrorist organization Popular Front of India (PFI) is largely responsible for making Kerala a breeding ground of ISIS recruitments. The PFI terrorists spearheaded the radicalization of youths and the conversion of non-Muslims to Islam. This was also cited in a report filed by the National Investigation Agency in front of a court in Kochi in September 2022.
Kerala has been turned into a fertile recruitment spot for these dreaded terrorist organizations, and the rate at which the vulnerable youth of Kerala is getting attacked, it’s worrisome. The unpleasant reality of Kerala and the lack of proper action against it, is only helping these terrorists, who are often disguised under the veil of lovers.
For Hindi Readers: केरल: इस्लामी कट्टरवाद की भूमि