Pakistan's spy agency ISI and JeM planned Pulwama attack: NIA
The Pulwama attack of February 14, 2019, wasn't merely the brainchild of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed but the country's spy agency ISI was also involved in it, the charge-sheet of National Investigation Agency (NIA) claims, as per a report in HT. The final charge-sheet, to be filed by end of this month, says that Pakistan exported terrorists to execute the attack. Here are more details.
Last year, 40 CRPF soldiers were martyred in dastardly attack
In what qualified as the worst attack on armed forces in decades in Kashmir, a car laced with explosives rammed into a CRPF convoy in Pulwama, triggering a deafening explosion. The subsequent martyrdom of 40 soldiers sparked a nationwide outcry. Days later, on February 26, 2019, Indian Air Force jets breached Pakistani airspace to bomb Jaish's biggest camp in Balakot.
Jaish became attack's face but ISI worked behind the stage
Jaish, headed by UN-designated terrorist Masood Azhar, was believed to have executed the attack to continue its proxy war against India. However, NIA's charge-sheet suggests a more sinister plan. Citing an official, privy to NIA's charge-sheet, the daily said that Pakistan used a local Kashmiri for the violent episode to further its agenda and "prove" that the attack was driven by "home-grown militancy."
Apparently, suicide bomber, who drove vehicle, wanted Kashmiris to "fight"
To note, the car, which caused the attack was being driven by Adil Ahmad Dar, a 20-year-old man from Pulwama. Before killing himself in the attack, Dar had recorded a video saying Jaish kept the "fight" alive. "Come, join the group and prepare for one last fight," he said, exhorting young Kashmiris to pick up arms just like he did.
Attack was "meant to create unrest" in India
The official told the daily that strong technical, documentary, and material evidence in the Pulwama attack point towards the Pakistan government's direct involvement in the carnage. The attack was aimed at creating unrest in India, the person said. To recall, after the attack, already poor ties between India and Pakistan further nosedived with New Delhi cornering Islamabad on various global platforms.
After Pulwama attack, Azhar became a UN-designated terrorist
It was after the Pulwama attack that New Delhi aggressively asked Pakistan to not shelter terrorists, who wage a war against India. In fact, it was India's immense diplomatic effort that got Azhar listed as a terrorist by the UN, weeks after the attack. This development caused much discomfort in Pakistan. India's strong statements against Pakistan also ensured that it remains on FATF's greylist.
Azhar's brother, Dar have been named by NIA in charge-sheet
Reportedly, besides Azhar, the NIA charge-sheet names his brother Mufti Abdul Rauf Asghar as the primary accused. Shakir Bashir Magrey, Mohammad Abbas Rather, Mohammad Iqbal Rather, Waiz-ul-Islam, Insha Jan, Tariq Ahmad Shah, and Bilal Ahmed Kuchey, who worked with Jaish were mentioned in the charge-sheet for "conducting reconnaissance, providing logistics and assisting in planning the attack." Dar's name also featured in the charge-sheet.
Dead terrorists were also named by NIA
Other people who reportedly featured in the charge-sheet are Pakistan-based terrorist Mohammad Umar Farooq, a terrorist named Kamran who was transported across the border to execute the attack, and Jaish's area commander Mudassir Khan. All three of them were gunned down in March 2019 in separate operations. Another official said Union Home Ministry has approved filing the charge-sheet under anti-terror laws.