NEW DELHI: India has briefed a select group of head of missions here about what it called ‘Pakistan’s direct role’ in planning the terror attack which was recently foiled by Indian security forces with the killing of four Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorists in Nagrota in Jammu and Kashmir.
The heads of missions were provided a detailed information docket giving details of the incident as it transpired as well as list of items and ammunition that was recovered from terrorists clearly indicating their Pakistani origins.
Sources said they were also briefed on how terrorists got into India, which is now clear as an underground tunnel has been found in the Samba sector.
They said envoys were told how preliminary investigations by police and intelligence authorities and markings on the recovered AK-47 rifles and other items brought it out that terrorists belonged to Pakistan-based Jaish-e- Mohammed.
“It was pointed out how the incident of November 19 is part of Pakistan’s ongoing terror campaign in Jammu and Kashmir and that in 2020 itself we have seen 200 incidents of terrorist violence and neutralization of 199 terrorists. Details of JeM’s involvement in previous such incidents were also shared,” a source said.
In terms of the bigger picture, it was clear that the terrorists were planning biggest terror attack in India since Pulwama in February 2019 and implications can be guessed, the sources said
They said it is part of a plot to sabotage DDC (District Development Council) elections in Jammu and Kashmir and to carry out terror attack to coincide with the anniversary of 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes.
Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla briefed the select group of Heads of Missions on the planned terrorist attack and the implications of the incident on security, diplomacy and the battle against terrorism.
ANI has learnt that this is the first of several briefings to be conducted by MEA in small groups in view of COVID-19 situation. Other secretaries will also be briefing Heads of Missions in their areas of jurisdiction. The idea is to share information as widely as possible with the international community.
The Heads of Missions were sensitized about India’s concerns regarding Pakistan’s sustained efforts to destabilize the situation in Jammu and Kashmir and to subvert local elections and democracy, sources added.
After the killing of four terrorists in the Nagrota encounter here, Inspector General of Police, Jammu Zone on Thursday said that it was possible they were planning a big attack and targeting the upcoming District Development Council (DDC) elections in the Union territory.
The DDC elections will be conducted in Jammu and Kashmir in eight phases between November 28 and December 19, and the counting of votes will take place on December 22.
Mukesh Singh, IG, Jammu Zone also informed that the kind of seizure from the encounter site is “unprecedented”. “It’s possible that they were planning a big attack. This kind of seizure is unprecedented. It is possible that they were targeting the DDC election. However, we are investigating,” he said in a press briefing here.
According to sources, the four terrorists were likely from the United Nations-designated terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM). “These terrorists used old modus operandi and had recently infiltrated the Indian side. An investigation is underway,” they added.
Earlier, troops of 160 Battalion, 137 Battalion, Central Reserve Police Force along with Special Operations Group of Jammu and Kashmir Police were out on duty after receiving information regarding a suspicious truck carrying terrorists. Following this, an encounter broke out between the troops and terrorists at 4.20 am when the truck was attempted to be stopped near the toll plaza, the police said in a statement.
Singh said that the truck driver is absconding and the police are looking for him. As many as 11 AK-47s rifles, three pistols, 29 grenades, and other devices were seized from the possession of the terrorists.
“During a routine check, a truck was intercepted at 5 am. The driver of the truck fled. During the search, CRPF soldiers and police were fired upon using heavy ammunition, and grenades were also lobbed. More forces were called in and the encounter went on for 3 hours,” the IG said.