The Punjab Police, in a a joint operation with central agencies, thwarted a possible terrorist attack by busting a Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT)-backed module and arresting its two operatives, DGP Gaurav Yadav Saturday said.
Police recovered two Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), as many hand grenades, one .30 bore pistol with two magazines and 24 cartridges, eight detonators, one timer switch and four batteries from their possession.
The terror module is being handled by Firdaus Ahmed Bhat, an active LeT member, the DGP said, adding the arrested accused have been identified as Uzair Ul Haq of Rahpora Khudwani and Raj Mohammad Andleeb of Kherwan, both in Jammu and Kashmir.
Punjab Police had received intelligence inputs that the state border is being used by the LeT for smuggling a huge consignment of arms and explosives and their two members are expected to retrieve the cache in the area of Kathu Nangal. Based on inputs, the state special operation cell (SSOC) wing of Amritsar police and central agencies launched the operation and apprehended the duo with the weapon consignment, Yadav said.
He said preliminary investigations revealed that the accused were recruited by Firdaus Bhat and the militant outfit was planning to use them to target prominent personalities and places of strategic importance in J&K and Punjab. The DGP said the duo was in constant touch with Bhat via various social media platforms. On Thursday, Bhat sent them to Amritsar to collect the consignment of weapons and bring them to the Kashmir valley, according to the police officer.
Assistant Inspector General, SSOC Amritsar, Sukhminder Singh Mann said it was also revealed that Uzair Ul Haq, a kin of Firdaus Bhat, was earlier arrested in two cases pertaining to stone pelting in the Kulgam district. Raj Mohammad Andleeb has no previous criminal record, he added.
Further investigations are being carried out to unearth the entire terror network of LeT, he said, adding efforts are also being made to detect the source of consignment.
A case under relevant sections of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), section 25 of the Arms Act, sections 3, 4 and 5 of the Explosives Act and sections 109, 115 and 120-B of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) has been registered in Amritsar.