Militant module busted in Srinagar; 4 arrested

Arms and ammunition recovered from militants in Srinagar on Thursday. -Excelsior/Shakeel
Arms and ammunition recovered from militants in Srinagar on Thursday. -Excelsior/Shakeel

Dr Asif, Gul handlers operating from Saudi, Pak: DIG

Excelsior Correspondent
SRINAGAR, Jan 6: A militant module of Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) was busted today by arresting two militants and their equal number of associates.
Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Police, Central Kashmir, Sujeet Kumar told a press conference here that the module was operated by their handlers Dr Asif and Sajjad Gul, from Saudi Arabia and Pakistan respectively. He said that they were providing these militants and OGWs weapons and money through a network of OGWs.

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He said that on December 22 last year, militants targeted and killed a property dealer in Safakadal area and after the incident Srinagar Police started investigation into this killing.
“During the course of investigation, movement of some suspects was detected in Srinagar city and based on further analysis and credible human intelligence, Srinagar Police detected suspicious movement of militant in Bhagat Barzulla area,” he said.
The DIG said that Srinagar police along with CRPF laid special Nakas and apprehended two militants identified as Suhail Qadir Khanday son of Ghulam Qadir Khanday of Tral and Suhail Mushtaq son of Mushtaq Ahmed Waza of Niklora of TRF and MGH outfit-both off-shoots of LeT and JeM outfits near Barzulla Bridge.
“During search, two pistols along with two magazines and 30 pistol bullets were recovered on spot. On further questioning incriminating material, arms and ammunition including 2 pistols, 6 pistol magazines, 69 rounds and 2 pistol silencers have been recovered from their hideout in Srinagar city. So far, 4 pistols, 8 pistol magazines, 99 live rounds and 2 pistol silencers have been recovered in the case,” he said.
Kumar said that two associates Basit Bilal Makaya son of Bilal Ahmed Makaya of Qamar Abad Qamarwari and Naikoo Imad Nasar son of Farooq Ahmed Bhat of Kiloora Shopian, were operating with them as OGWs.
“Both associates have been arrested. In this connection, a case under FIR No 08/2021 of Saddar PS under Sections 7/25 of the Arms Act and Sections 18 and 23 of UAP Act has been registered in PS Saddar. During questioning, the arrested militants disclosed that they were operating in Srinagar city on the directions of Asif Maqbool Dar of MIG Colony Bemina and at present Dhamam Saudi Arabia and Sajjad Gul of HMT Parimpora at present Pakistan.”
The DIG said that both the handlers from Saudi Arabia and Pakistan were providing them weapons and money through a network of OGWs being identified.
He said that this module has also done recce of security installations like NIA office and Delhi Police Headquarters and shared same with handlers in Pakistan.
“As per the investigation, the targets in city for killings were also selected and conveyed to them by Dr Asif and Sajad Gul. Suhail Qadar Khandy was working in Saudi Arabia with Dr Asif and in August 2021 on the direction of Dr Asif he came back and started working as an operative of TRF/MGH for coordinating the collection of arms and ammunition, money and militant attacks in Srinagar City,” Kumar said.
Inspector General of Police Kashmir Zone, Vijay Kumar congratulated Srinagar police for busting a hybrid militant module of TRF and MGH in Srinagar.
He said that there are already three FIRs registered against Dr Asif in Srinagar for using provocative language and this is for the first time that he has been directly found involved in militancy in Kashmir.
In the meantime, an encounter started between militants and security forces in Zaloowa area of Chadoora in Central Kashmir’s Budgam district this evening.
A joint team of Police, Army and CRPF launched a cordon and search operation in Chadoora.
As the joint team of security forces encircled the suspected spot, the hiding militants fired upon them, triggering a gunfight.
An official said that two militants are believed to be trapped inside.