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Militants using official routes to sneak into J-K

Militants using official routes to sneak into J-K

Author: Arun Sharma
Publication: The Indian Express
Date: July 15, 2008

The modus operandi of militants seems to have become official. Militant commanders across the border have started using Pakistan's official channels to push in men and money in Jammu and Kashmir.

The lid was taken off this following the arrest of a Hizbul Mujahideen commander and a local youth from two different places in Rajouri, last night. They were identified as Abdul Rashid of Seal Bandar in Doda and Mushtaq Hussain of Labiyat Jamola in Rajouri.

While the former had first gone to Bangladesh from Karachi on a valid Pakistani passport before crossing the Indo-Bangladesh border to sneak into Kolkata, the latter had gone to Pakistan to meet his sister on a valid Indian visa and returned home only ten days ago.

Sources said Rashid, who had been appointed district commander of Dada, was on his way to Jammu at the time.

During preliminary interrogations, he revealed that he had crossed over to Muzaffrabad for arms training in 1998 and after having stayed there for over nine years, had returned to J-K last year.

In view of the intensified vigil by the Army along the Line of Control (LoC), he preferred an unconventional method to sneak into the state. He first went to Dhaka (Bangladesh) from Karachi on a Pakistani passport and from there he sneaked into West Bengal on the Indian side along with other Bangladeshi infiltrators. Thereafter, he left for J-K.

After staying in Shopian for some time, he was sent to Rajouri. From there, he was to go to Doda as the outfit's district commander.

However, special nakas were laid at various places on the Rajouri-Jammu road under the supervision of SP Rajesh Kumar and the militant commander was apprehended near Chingus.

Meanwhile, the police, acting on a tip-off, seized Rs 1 lakh from Hussain, which a militant commander had given to him during his stay in Pakistan for handing over to two Hizbul commanders, Adil and Saqib, operating in Rajouri.

This is for the first time that a person having gone to Pakistan on a valid Indian visa has reportedly brought in hawala money for militants in Kashmir, shocking the police officials in the state.

Sources said Hussain had gone to Pakistan to meet his married sister on a valid Indian passport through Attari. After staying there for over a month, he returned through the same route, but brought along with him Rs 11 Lakh to be delivered to two Hizbul militants operating in the area.

Pointing out that the money was given to him by a militant commander settled in Muzaffrabad, souces said it was shocking that Hussain managed to bring in the money despite security arrangement at Attari. The local police, however, will approach its Punjab counterpart to look into the matter.

Superintendent of Police, Rajouri, Rajesh Kumar, who supervised both the operations, confirmed the arrests.
He, however, refused to divulge details saying that it would hamper investigations.

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