SRINAGAR: The Valley has averted what could have been a major tragedy. Police foiled an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) attack planned by militants in Jammu. A Kashmiri youth studying in Chandigarh was arrested. About 6.5 kg of explosives was recovered from him.
Three more were arrested in this connection. Police says the plan was a blast in a crowded place on the second anniversary of the Pulwama attack. IGP of Jammu Mukesh Singh said police was on high alert after receiving inputs that militants were planning an attack in Jammu. He said that on Saturday evening, policemen on patrol arrested Sohail, who was moving around suspiciously. “We found a bag in his possession and recovered 6.5 kg of IED from it. The IED was not activated,” he said.
Singh revealed that in Jhang area of Ram Nagar in the border district of Samba, police had recovered six pistols and 15 small IEDs on Saturday evening in a separate operation. Investigations are on to find out if there is a link between those and Sohail. According to police, Sohail is a student of nursing in a college in Chandigarh. “During questioning, he said he was directed by his handler from the Al-Badr group to plant the IED in Jammu,” the IGP said.
Sohail was apparently given four targets in crowded places - Raghunath Mandir, bus stand, railway station and Lakhdata (jewellers) bazaar. He was asked to choose one. According to the IGP, after placing the IED Sohail had to fly to Srinagar where he was scheduled to meet Athar Shakeel, a top overground worker of Al-Badr. He added that during investigation, it was found that another youth called Qazi Wasim - also studying in a Chandigarh college - had information about the plan.
“He has been picked up from Chandigarh and another person, Abid Nabi, has also been arrested,” Singh said.The IGP said with the arrest of these three and timely recovery of the IED, a major danger on the second anniversary of the Pulwama attack was averted.
Recent arrests of militants
Policemen on patrol arrested Sohail in Jammu who was moving around suspiciously. The police recently arrested two top militant commanders from the Jammu region and foiled their attempt to establish bases there. Chief commander of Lashkar-e-Mustafa (offshoot of Jaish-e-Mohammad) Hidayatullah Malik and chief of The Resistance Front (offshoot of Lashkar) Zahoor Ahmad Rather alias Sahil and Khalid were among those arrested.
In the net
Arrested Sohail (Jammu), Qazi Wasim (Chandigarh), Abid Nabi (Srinagar), Athar Shakeel Khan (Srinagar)
Recovered 6 pistols, 15 small IEDs