THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Exploring a new possibility in the bullet seizure, the police team probing the recovery of 14 bullets from Kulathupuzha has been liaising with various Central agencies to ascertain whether the bullets belonged to the batch that was seized from Pakistan army during the 1971 war. The 1971 war had led to the liberation of Bangladesh after Pakistan army was routed by Indian forces and large quantity of war booty, including ammunition, was seized by Indian Army during the operations.
Highly-placed sources told TNIE that a large part of the seized Pakistan ammunition was distributed by the then Central Government mostly to high-profile military officers and other elites as war trophy. “We are exploring all possibilities on how the cartridges made by Pakistan Ordnance Factory reached the place. The 1971 war and subsequent seizure of Pak weapons by our Army could be one of the reasons. Since a part of the seized ammunition was distributed to various individuals, we are checking whether the cartridges belonged to that batch,” said sources.
Sources said that investigation is going on in the right direction and all angles, including terrorism, are being perused thoroughly. The cartridges, the police sources said, were more than 40 years old and bore the head stamp of Pakistan Ordnance Factory (POF). “If we connect these dots, then the 1971 war angle also comes under our purview,” the sources added.
State police chief Loknath Behera, meanwhile, said the probe is going on in the right direction and the investigators are working on certain leads that they have obtained so far. “Our first goal is to identify who carried these bullets. Only by identifying the person, we can unearth more details,” he said.
The bullets were recovered from Thiruvananthapuram-Thenmala State Highway near Kulathupuzha forest area on Saturday. Twelve of the bullets were found wrapped in a pouch, while the rest was found separately. The primary observation is that the 7.62 mm bullets were used in long-range weapons. Since the cartridges bore POF head stamp, Central agencies too joined the bandwagon. The NIA and Military Intelligence personnel had visited the place where the bullets were found, seeking more details.
‘In right direction’
State police chief Loknath Behera said the probe is going on in the right direction and the investigators are working on certain leads that they have obtained so far