Other States

Resurgent Jaish poses new challenge to security apparatus

Senior CRPF officers patrolling a downtown street in Kashmir. File photo.

Senior CRPF officers patrolling a downtown street in Kashmir. File photo.   | Photo Credit: PTI

Outfit is jockeying for power among militant groups to take centre stage: police

The Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) militant outfit, with a cadre strength of zero in 2015 and six in 2016, is regrouping in Kashmir again and has carried more attacks on the security forces than the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and the Hizbul Mujahideen (HM)outfits in the past two months, according to the police data.

In a “desperate bid” to take centre stage, The JeM has carried out around 10 grenade attacks, with four grenades triggered in capital Srinagar this year so far, according to the police report. The attacks left around 20 security personnel injured. The JeM attacks come at a time when the LeT and the HM’s abilities were “heavily dented” with the killing of around 20 militants in the past two months by the security forces in back-to-back operations, the police said.

Eight JeM militants have also been killed between December 30, 2018 and February 1, 2019, out of 19 killed for the same period. “Of the eight killed, only two were foreigners and the others were local recruits from JeM old axis of Tral-Awantipora-Pulwama in south Kashmir,” said a senior police officer.

Close third

According to the police data, the JeM has emerged as a close third in 2019 with its ranks swelling to over 60 local recruits compared to 100-plus recruits of the LeT and the Hizb each.

 

The outfit attempted a major comeback in October last year when it introduced high-calibre M4 carbine for sensational attacks in Srinagar and Pulwama, killing three security personnel.

Top police officers in Srinagar suggest that in post-Burhan Wani killing situation, the JeM started recruiting young boys in 2017 from massive rallies carried out in south Kashmir in favour of slain militants. Otherwise, in 2015, Adil Pathan, a resident of Pakistan, and his associate, Abdul Rehman alias Chota Burmi, were the last active militants killed in Pulwama’s Tral.

The JeM introduced first ever fidayeen or suicide attack in Jammu and Kashmir on November 3, 1999, when a Srinagar boy, Afad Ahmad Shah, along with another militant, drove an improvised explosive device-laden car into the Badamibagh Cantonment in Srinagar, killing six security personnel.

Thursday’s attack was the second fidayeen attack in Pulwama. On December 31, 2017, the JeM employed a local youth, Fardeen Khanday, 16, to carry out a fidayeen attack on a CRPF camp and later upload the video of Khanday, enumerating the reasons behind his act.

“The JeM and the LeT are jockeying for power among the militant groups and use more ferocious attacks to take centre stage and recruit more locals,” the police report, accessed by The Hindu, warned the security establishment in 2018.

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Printable version | May 24, 2020 4:57:52 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/resurgent-jaish-poses-new-challenge-to-security-apparatus/article26273226.ece

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