Bhatkal’s Phone Call to Wife is Both Security Breach and ISIS Hint

Yasin Bhatkal’s phone call to wife Zahida has sparked concerns over security breach, while hinting at ISIS links.

2 min read

Indian Mujahideen co-founder Yasin Bhatkal called his wife Zahida from Hyderabad jail and said ISIS will bail him out.

However DG VK Singh of Telangana Prisons says that if Bhatkal talks about the ISIS connection or any plan of running away, it may be because of his intention to mislead the police as phone calls are recorded by authorities.

He also said that there is zero chance of Bhatkal possessing a cell phone inside the high-security Cherlapally Jail.

There is no question of anybody talking from inside a jail (from a cellphone)... Yasin Bhatkal has been talking to his wife through court permission from our authorized phone. Such conversation is always recorded and made available to the investigating agency.
— Telangana DG


“Damascus se log madad kar rahe hain...”

The most alarming aspect of the security breach? Bhatkal reportedly told his wife during the call that he would be out soon with help from Damascus. This clearly hints at a possibility of links with the Islamic State, reports IBNLive.

The IBNLive report also quotes sources as claiming that the police authorities are not as worried about the IS angle just yet – as much as they are about the smuggling of the phone. A probe apparently revealed that the phone had been smuggled into the jail a month ago and had been accessed by Bhatkal as well as other criminals.

The Times of India reports that the call – made by Bhatkal to his wife Zahida – was five minutes long, during the course of which Bhatkal was heard saying: “Damascus se log madad kar rahe hain. Mai jald hi riha ho jaoonga”.

A Profile of a Terror Suspect

Yasin Bhatkal’s phone call to wife Zahida has sparked concerns over security breach, while hinting at ISIS links.
Yasin Bhatkal (Photo Courtesy:

Yasin Bhatkal, whose real name is Muhammad Ahmad Zarar Siddibapa, was arrested in 2013 from the India-Nepal border in Bihar. He co-founded the Indian Mujahideen in 2008 with his brothers Riaz Bhatkal and Abdul Subhan Qureshi.

Bhatkal was allegedly involved in the 2010 Pune German Bakery blast in which 17 people died and at least 60 people were injured. Bhatkal also featured on the NIA Most Wanted list till security agencies nabbed him in 2008, after having looked for him for 5 years.


The ISIS Link

The ISIS link may not immediately worry the jail authorities, who are busy racking their brains over the presence of the phone, but they will soon want to take a look, hard look at the ISIS angle.

The Islamic State controls large swathes of territory in Iraq and Syria. In fact, as TOI explicitly comments,

The group has adroitly blended its extremist interpretation of Islam and modern communication tools to find recruits across the globe, as well as to inspire ‘lone wolf’ attacks, like the recent ones in France.
TOI report

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