Is Pakistan planning another terrorist attack on Amarnath Yatra?

Indian intelligence agencies have warned that at least 450 trained terrorists are waiting at several launch pads near PoK side of the border to infiltrate into India. According to reports, the intelligence agencies have recently warned the central government that these terrorists are planning to attach the Amarnath Yatras, which commence from late June.

Reports state that according to the intelligence gathered by Indian agencies, these terrorists have been stationed thereby Pakistan backed terror outfits like Jaish-e-Mohammad, Hizb-ul-Mujahideen and Lashkar-e-Taiba. Inputs state that these terrorists are stationed at 11 launch pads namely Kel, Shardi, Athmuqam, Dudhnial, Pachhiban, Leepa, Jura, Nyali, Thandapani, Lanjote and Nikail inside Pakistan Occupied Kashmir. These terrorists are believed to have been trained by the Pakistani army in Nyali.

61 of the terrorists reportedly belong to LeT and were trained in Jura by the Pakistan Army to be part of its Border Action Team (BAT). Several Fidayeen (suicide attackers) are also believed to be in the group.

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The intelligence agencies reportedly warned that the suspension of anti-terror operations by the Indian Army has given these terrorists ample time to terror outfits to recruit and regroup. They have reported after the 2016 surgical strikes, this is the first time such heightened activity is being witnessed in the cross-border launch pads. The presence of SSG (Special Security Group) in and around these launch pads also aides to the idea that the terrorists are being trained and aided by Pakistan Army. According to a report in Zee Media, the intelligence report also gave an estimated number of terrorists present in these launch pads. They are listed as per their respective sector on the Indian side as follows:

Gurez – 20 terrorists

Machhil – 50 terrorists

Keran – 55 terrorists with Pakistan’s BAT

Tangdhar – 65 terrorists belonging to LeT and JeM

Naugam – 7 terrorists

Uri – 50 terrorists

Poonch – 35 terrorists

Bhimber Gali- 120 terrorists with BAT

Naushera – 30 terrorists

Rampur – 30 terrorists

The intelligence warning has come just when Home Minister Rajnath Singh is on a visit to Srinagar and is currently holding talks with the state government over the possible extension of the suspension of anti-terror ops in the Kashmir region. It is also notable here that in recent days, after the suspension of anti-terror ops have been announced, the attacks on security forces by local stone pelting jihadis have also increased. There were also several grenade attacks recently. Almost a dozen people including several civilians were injured in the grenade attack this week. Last year 7 Hindu pilgrims were killed and a dozen more were injured when Islamist terrorists had opened fire on a bus during the Amarnath Yatra.

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