It has been four months since the Home Ministry instructed the states to open a cyber cell to counter the threat of recruitment of Indian youths by the Isis or Islamic State or Daesh, but the West Bengal government has reportedly failed to open one due to shortage of manpower.
According to the intelligence agencies, West Bengal is reportedly at the highest risk of becoming the target of the Isis, which is planning to recruit youths through social media to join the extremist terror outfit, according to The Times of India.
The survey conducted by the cyber cell of the Intelligence Bureau found that Howrah is the fourth city after Srinagar, Guwahati and Chinchwad in Pune, where youths aged between 16 to 30 were found showing interests in Isis online.
The Islamic State has put up videos in Bengali language and nearly 147 posters of the terror group were also found in 17 bordering villages in Nadia and Murshidabad. The posters read: "Mughalistan" -- a name coined for an independent homeland of the Muslims.
The Home Ministry in August called a meeting of DGPs of 12 states, including West Bengal police commissioner GMP Reddy. It asked the states to appoint a cyber team that will be trained at National Technical and Research Organisation (NTRO), Bengaluru, to trace the online activities of those who are showing interest in the Isis propaganda.
However, the West Bengal government has failed to set up a cyber cell. According to a senior state police officer, there is not enough manpower to form a cyber team.
"There are some activities going on in the state and we are trying to track them in our own way and through the existing mechanism, but we cannot afford to form a dedicated cyber team at this moment. We have a serious shortage of manpower and unless this problem is managed we cannot afford to spare efficient officers only for monitoring social networking sites," TOI quoted the officer as saying.