January 2016 News

Won't Target Kashmir Ultras, Army Told Sharif

6 January 2016
The Hindu
Vijaita Singh

New Delhi: Days before Prime Minister Narendra Modi made a surprise stopover in Lahore in December, intelligence agencies had told him that the Pakistan Army had conveyed to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif that they would not take action against 'Kashmir-focussed groups.' The Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) is learnt to have made a presentation on the issue for Mr. Modi at the DGPs' conference in the Rann of Kutch, Gujarat, on December 19. In the presentation, the R&AW said the Pakistan Army was against taking action on terror groups active in Jammu and Kashmir such as the Lashkar-e-Taiba, Hizbul Mujahideen and Jaish-e-Mohammad. By then, the talks between the National Security Advisers had taken place in Bangkok. Mr. Modi was alerted to the influence of the 'deep state' and was also told that the newly created Al Qaeda in Indian Subcontinent was being prepped by Pakistan's ISI to carry out terror strikes in India. This information assumes significance as the 2001 Parliament attack case convict Afzal Guru, who was hanged in 2013, has emerged as a common link between the Pathankot attack and the foiled attack on the Indian Consulate in Mazar-I-Sharif, Afghanistan. Attacks in the name of Afzal Guru The 2001 Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, who was hanged in 2013, has emerged as a common link between the Pathankot airbase attack and the foiled attack on the Indian Consulate in Mazar-I-Sharif, Afghanistan. The Pathankot attackers left behind a handwritten note in English in the vehicle of the former Gurdaspur Superintendent of Police, Salwinder Singh. It said the 'A.G.S' squad of the Jaish-e-Mohammad planned attacks from Tangdhar (in the Kashmir valley) to Samba, Kathua and Rajbagh (in Jammu) and Delhi to avenge the death of Afzal Guru. The note was dated December 25, the day Prime Minister Narendra Modi went to Afghanistan and later made a surprise visit to Lahore. A fidayeen squad (suicide bombers), which tried to storm the Indian Consulate, left two messages written in blood on the walls of the building they had occupied. The messages said their mission was to avenge Guru's hanging. A senior government official said infiltration of six Pathankot attackers could not have been possible without the help of a government entity in Pakistan. 'One or maximum two persons will be able to infiltrate the border on their own, but it takes state sponsorship to make six persons infiltrate across the border and, that too, with heavy explosives and ammunition,' said an official.

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