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Punjab police arrest another LeT operative

The Punjab police said on Saturday that they arrested another Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operative as he tried to escape to Kashmir. His arrest came two days after LeT operatives Aamir Hussain Wani and Wasim Hassan Wani were caught trying to smuggle weapons to the Valley.

Director-General of Police Dinkar Gupta said the third militant, identified as Javed Ahmed Bhat, 29, is a resident of Shirmal in Shopian. “His truck was intercepted and he was arrested on the Amritsar-Jammu Highway in Pathankot...,” he said. He tried to escape to the Valley after he learnt about the arrest on Thursday of Aamir and Wasim.

Mr. Gupta said Javed hails from the same village as Aamir and Wasim, and is their childhood friend. “They had been doing transport business together for the past 2-3 years and making trips to Delhi, Amritsar and Jalandhar.”

He said the preliminary interrogation of Javed revealed that he had come with Aamir and Wasim from the Kashmir Valley to Amritsar, under the pretext of transporting fruits and vegetables, to collect weapons. “They came in two trucks. After picking up the consignment from near the Vallah Road on June 11, Aamir and Wasim asked Javed to stay behind in Amritsar to contact the weapons supplier on the directions of their handler Ishfaq Ahmed Dar alias Bashir Ahmed Khan of the LeT,” he said.

Mr. Gupta said these arrests pointed to a widespread terror network backed by Pakistan-based militants. “They further corroborated the recent intelligence reports that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence has been pushing weapons and militants from across the border into Punjab, and then to the Kashmir Valley for terror activities,” he said.

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Printable version | Aug 6, 2020 4:14:36 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/punjab-police-arrest-another-let-operative/article31823465.ece

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