As per a report published by DNA, the US-designated global terrorist JeM chief Masood Azhar’s brother, Mufti Abdul Rauf Asghar is suspected to be the mastermind behind the cowardly Pulwama. It is being further contemplated that Abdul Rauf Asghar had planned the attack in league with the ISI, Pakistan’s intelligence agency.
Abdul Rauf Asghar had been charge-sheeted by the NIA in November 2018, for masterminding the 2016 Nagrota terror attack case.
Intelligence agencies are taken aback by the scale of Thursday’s attack as they believed that only remnants of Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) were present in the Valley. Almost the entire leadership of JeM has been wiped out over the years.
However, inputs received by the agencies suggested the JeM had been rebuilding its network in south Kashmir over the last three months.
In the ghastly act, at least 40 CRPF men were killed after a Jaish-e-Mohammad suicide bomber rammed an explosive-laden car into the 55-seater bus they were travelling in at Lethpora, Pulwama in South Kashmir.
A terrorist belonging to Pakistani Army backed Islamic terrorist outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad, identified as Adil Ahmad Dar, rammed an SUV laden with over 300 kg of explosives into the CRPF bus carrying about 40 personnel.
The CRPF convoy of 70 vehicles carrying over 2000 personnel was on the way to Srinagar from Jammu after the highway opened for one way traffic after several days of closure due to heavy rainfall and subsequent landslides.
Jaish-e-Mohammad claimed responsibility for the attack and identified the suicide bomber (fidayeen) as Adil Ahmad from Kakapora in Pulwama, who had joined the Jaish-e-Mohammed in 2018. They also released a recorded video message of the suicide bomber.
Those tracking the developments in the state said that a suicide car attack was very uncommon in the state and has not taken place in Kashmir over the past two decades.
The suicide attack was first carried out by Jaish-e-Mohammad in 2000 when Afaq Ahmed Shah, a Srinagar boy, tried to ram an explosive-laden Maruti 800 into the entrance of Army’s 15 Corps headquarters in Srinagar.
The Army soldiers, however, challenged the attacker and forced him to detonate the explosives prematurely.
The Jaish carried another suicide attack the next year at the same place which was also foiled.
The last time a car bombing of such magnitude happened was in 2001 when JeM detonated a Tata Sumo filled with explosives outside the gate of the old assembly building at Srinagar’s Jehangir Chowk in which 38 people were killed and 40 others were injured. After the explosion, three Jaish militants barged into the assembly complex and were later killed in a long gunfight.
With the death toll rising to almost 44, this cowardly and horrific attack sponsored by none other than the terrorist state of Pakistan is being considered the worst attack in the history of Jammu and Kashmir. PM Narendra Modi, condemning this dastardly act, assured that the sacrifices of “our brave security personnel shall not go in vain”.
“Attack on CRPF personnel in Pulwama is despicable. I strongly condemn this dastardly attack. The sacrifices of our brave security personnel shall not go in vain. The entire nation stands shoulder to shoulder with the families of the brave martyrs. May the injured recover quickly,” tweeted Prime Minister Modi.
Meanwhile, Home Minister Singh is also expected to visit Srinagar today.