Two more Kashmiri ultras with Pakistani wives, children held
UP police sounds Kashmir counterparts
JAMMU, May 1: In less than a month after the crossing of four Kashmiri militants along with their Pakistani wives and children from Madhubani district of Bihar along Indo-Nepal border, two more Kashmiri ultras, or former militants, along with their wives and four children have been detained by Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) at Maharajaganj in Uttar Pradesh, bordering Nepal, this morning. The detentions came even as the National Investigating Agency (NIA) was yet to complete its enquiry into the arrest of Kashmiri militant Liyaqat Shah by Delhi Police. The Delhi Police had arrested Liyaqat Shah in March claiming that he was plotting a terror attack at a shopping mall while Jammu and Kashmir Police had claimed that he had returned from Pakistan via Indo-Nepal border in Uttar Pradesh. Shah is still in the judicial custody.
Official sources told the Excelsior that a team of SSB intercepted eight persons including four children when they were heading towards the Indian territory after crossing from Nepal border at Maharajaganj area of Uttar Pradesh early this morning. The SSB called local police of Maharajaganj police station and both started questioning of the infiltrators. Sources said both the male infiltrators disclosed their identity to the SSB and local police as Muzaffar Ahmad and Mohammad Rashid, residents of Kupwara district in the Kashmir Valley. They were accompanied by their two Pakistani wives whom they had married after exfiltration to Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) in nineties for arms training.
The Kashmiri militants, or former militants, disclosed that they had crossed over to PoK from the LoC in Kupwara sector in mid nineties for arms training after being lured by the militants of Hizbul Mujahideen outfit. They were reported to have admitted undergoing arms training but said later they were disenchanted with the militancy and shunned it. The duo married the PoK woman and had two children each. They were working in local shops to earn their livelihood. They were reported to have managed passports and visas for Nepal after paying money to some agents and flew to Kathmandu from Karachi. From Kathmandu, they sneaked into Indian side along Indo-Nepal border.
Sources said Uttar Pradesh have established contact with Kashmir Police to ascertain credentials of the Kashmiri militants. The militants along with their wives and children could be handed over to Kashmir Police.
These were the second detentions of Kashmiri militants returning from Pakistan/PoK after the arrest of Liyaqat Shah by New Delhi police last month, which had triggered uproar in the Assembly as well as parts of the Kashmir Valley. After the State Government announced Rehabilitation Policy for the former militants returning from Pakistan and PoK without weapons from four identified routes, about over 200 such persons along with their family members had come back to the State via Nepal border after taking flights from Karachi to Kathmandu.
Nearly 700 former militants had applied for return under the Rehabilitation Policy through their families here but all those, who have come back so far, took Nepal route, which was not part of the Rehabilitation Policy. Four legal routes for the militants to take advantage of Rehabilitation Policy included Chakan-Da-Bagh (Poonch-Rawlakote), Uri-Muzaffarabad in Kashmir, Wagah border in Amritsar district of Pakistan and Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi. Sources said the militants, or former militants, were unable to take these routes due to presence of Pakistani Army and Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) on these routes.
The Indian Intelligence agencies were also worried that some of the militants, though not active now, could be used by the militants present in the State to revive the dying militancy. Moreover, most of the militants were returning with Pakistani wives, who could also pose a security risk at some stage.
On April 10, 12 persons including four Kashmiri militants, their three Pakistani wives and five children had been detained by the SSB and Bihar Police at Madhubani district of Bihar falling along Indo-Nepal border. The Bihar Police had handed them over to Kashmir Police.