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Jaish planning ever bigger strike, warn intel inputs

Emboldened by its success in the Pulwama suicide bombing, Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) plans to carry out another fidayeen attack of a much bigger magnitude, intelligence intercepts of conversations on February 16-17 between JeM leadership in Pakistan and its militants in Kashmir have revealed.

As per the intercepts, exclusively accessed by TOI, Jaish militants resolved to execute another bombing to cause massive casualty to Indian security forces. On Wednesday, a top intelligence official said various inputs from different quarters indicated that there could be a major attack either in Jammu or outside J&K.

Quoting intel sources, TOI had reported on February 19 that a 21-member JeM squad, including three suicide bombers, had infiltrated into Kashmir in December last year to launch three attacks, including two outside the Valley.

The intercepts picked up by the agencies also revealed that JeM is to release the video of the preparations of the Pulwama suicide bombing preparations.

Intelligence analysts said the release of the video is intended to glorify 20-year-old Adil Ahmad Dar, who rammed his explosive-laden Maruti Eeco van into one of the buses of the 78-vehicle CRPF convoy, killing 40 jawans on February 14. The video could help Jaish recruit more gullible and radicalised Kashmiri youth into suicide bombing missions, an analyst said.

JeM has also claimed that it was the terror group’s former operational commander Mohammad Waqas Dar who had planted the IED at Nowshera in Rajouri last week in which Army Major Chitresh Bisht was killed.

However, police officials said the entire communication among Jaish militants seemed to be a ‘psychological operation’ targeted at terrorizing India. “But since we have intercepted the communication, we cannot ignore it. We are on high alert and trying to corroborate the threats through other means too,” a senior police officer said.(TOI)

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