ISI’s re-structured offensive in J&K
8 January 2002
The Daily Excelsior
B L Kak
New Delhi: Pakistan''s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) is desperately preparing the ground for a restructured offensive in Jammu and Kashmir. The ISI has, as part of its new ‘Kashmir line’, successfully motivated the new leadership of the Hizbul Mujahideen to make its cadre work under the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT). This development has been engineered soon after the Hizbul''s centrist command was replaced by pro-Pakistan leaders, who include, among others, Ghulam Hassan Khan and Abdul Ahmad Bhat. At a time when the Hizbul Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Toiba are engaged in a major restructuring process, fresh signals from across the border suggest the possibility of selective killings in the districts of Doda, Udhampur and Poonch in the coming days. And if latest radio intercepts are any guide, terrorist strikes can be expected in several places in Rajouri and Poonch districts. Apparently encouraged by the deployment of Indian troops on the western border after several companies had to be withdrawn from counter terrorist duties, Pakistan sponsored terrorists have been, according to these intercepts, directed to target Budhal and Kandi sections in Rajouri and Thanamandi and Bhimber Gali in Poonch. Presence of a number of jihadis belonging to the LeT and JeM (Jaish-e- Mohammed) in these areas has already been acknowledge by the Military Intelligence (MI) and BSF''s intelligence agency. Infiltration of Jaish activists into Darhal section has also engaged the attention of the Unified Headquarters. The Pakistan Government''s action by way of effecting the arrest of a few hundred workers and sympathisers of the LeT and JeM has not affected the hardcore jihadi cadres. Classified intelligence inputs have confirmed that the forward camps of the LeT, JeM, Harkat-ul-Mujahideen and Al Badr continue to be in place, often right next to Pakistan Army facilities on the Line of Control (LoC). These inputs have also confirmed that the Chief of the Pakistan Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, Lt Gen Mohammed Aziz, is vehemently supporting the activity and agenda of the Jaish-e-Mohammed. Briefly discussing the ''direct'' involvement of the ''highest level of Pakistani Army'' in the activities of fascist groups, intelligence inputs reveal that Jaish-e-Mohammed changed its operation name to the Tehreek-ul-Furqan after the October 10 meeting presided over by Lt Gen Aziz. Intelligence reports have termed as ''farcical'' Islamabad''s announcement about the freezing of the bank accounts of the LeT and JeM. Asserting that LeT has no bank account since its finances are directly controlled by its parent body, Markaz Dawa-al-Irshad, these reports say that the assets of the Markaz have not been frozen. And sensational, indeed, is yet another revelation: Jaish-e-Mohammed''s accounts with the Allied Bank at Binori in Karachi and at Khayabeya in Rawalpindi have not been touched. Why? The ''highest levels of Pakistani Army'' have stopped action as, according to them, money deposited in the two accounts has not been used directly to finance terrorist operations. Intelligence reports have also revealed that the names of those persons from the Indian side of the LoC accommodated in the recently-announced 11-member council of the Lashkar-e-Toiba are ''fictitious''. The new council will have limited powers, as the LeT''s military operations will continue to be led by Zaki-ur-Rahman Lakhvi, a Pakistani national who has commanded the organisation''s terrorist activities in India since 1995. The web site of the Markaz Dawa-al-Irshad and its publications, particularly Voice of Islam, have brought to the fore the agenda of the LeT: ''Muslims ruled this part of the world for about 750 years. Now Muslim governments will be established again in the subscontinent, Insha- Allah, and the Lashkar-e-Toiba will perform this feat''.