National Investigation Agency (NIA), on Monday, arrested five persons including one Keralite with suspected links to Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist outfit based on information from six persons who were arrested from Kannur on Sunday. 

Zubani, 31, a native of Thodupuzha, was arrested from Tirunelveli while four medical students were arrested from Coimbatore. The arrested are Nabil, Ismail, Hoizur Rahman, Nawaz Khan, all natives of Ukkadam in Coimbatore. 

Zubani moved to Tirunelveli after NIA arrested his associates. Police tracked Zubani based on information from the six persons, who were arrested from Kannur on Sunday. The NIA revealed that the gang was aiming to attack prominent personalities in South India.

Read more: Kerala: Five with suspected ISIS link held in Kannur by NIA

The agency got information about the group while probing the missing of 21 persons from Kasargod and Palakkad, who is suspected to have joined ISIS. 

Read more: ISIS Link: 21 from Kerala are missing

The arrested persons belong to Kerala ISIS unit Ansar-ul Khilafah. The group was active on social media and had used WhatsApp to communicate about the meeting at Kanakamala, in Kannur, from where they were arrested. They were also active on Al-Muhajirin, the website used by ISIS.

The group contained 12 persons, but four among them escaped after getting information about NIA move. 

The NIA officials also said that electronic devices and explosives were seized during the search. 

It was in July 2016 that 21 persons went missing from Kasargod and Palakkad. Police had confirmed the ISIS link of missing persons. 

Read more: Police confirm ISIS link of missing Malayalees

Kerala police and Maharashtra Anti-terrorism Squad arrested Rizwan Khan and Arshid Qureshi, both staff of Islamic Research Foundation, as it was found that both were in contact with missing persons from the state. Qureshi and Rizwan are suspected to have recruited people to ISIS from India.

Read more: 'Zakir Naik's aide Qureshi urged us to fight India'