A day after Indian security forces foiled an attempt of February 2019-like terror attack in Pulwama, in a major development on Friday, it has identified terrorist who fabricated the IED on the vehicle. Known as Ismail alias Fauji Bhai, sources among the security forces said that he is the nephew of Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar, who was responsible for the February 2019 Pulwama terror attack on CRPF convoy.
Earlier in the day, investigations revealed that the white Santro car in which IED was fitted belonged to Hizbul Mujhauddin terrorist Hidayatullah Malik, sources said. Hidayatullaha's brother has been arrested by the forces from his home in Shopian, sources added.
Earlier on February 17, Pakistani terrorist Masood Azhar and his family went 'missing', ahead of the beginning of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) plenary meet. Azhar - the Jaish-e-Mohammed chief, was the mastermind behind the horrific Pulwama terror attack on February 14, 2019, in which 40 CRPF personnel were martyred. While the main conspirators of the module have since then been terminated by the Army, Azhar has reportedly been taken into custody by Pakistan. But intel sources state that Azhar had been secretly freed by Pakistan early in September, despite facing the heat of FATF.
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On 1 March 2019, Foreign Minister of Pakistan Mehmood Qureshi had inadvertently admitted that Masood Azhar was in Pakistan but is 'unwell'. He even admitted that the Pakistani administration is in contact with the UN-designated terrorist. Azhar, who was initially placed under house arrest in Pakistan after the 2001 parliament attack, but was freed later. While Pakistan claimed that he was arrested after the 26/11 attacks, his last known location was Markaz Subhan Allah, Bahawalpur.
A vehicle-borne IED attack attempt was averted as security forces detected and seized a car fitted with explosives in Pulwama district of Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday night, police said. The improvised explosive device (IED) was safely detonated in-situ, in visuals that have been accessed.
On Wednesday evening, a white Hyundai Santro skipped a signal between 8:30 to 9:30 pm at Aayangund Rajpora, Pulwama, amid the forces having intelligence input that terrorists may try to ferry explosives in such a manner. The forces fired rounds in the air, and then followed the vehicles, forcing those inside it to scarper. The car was left on the road 200 meters from the signal. A big barrel with 50-60 kg IED materials was found inside the vehicle. Jammu & Kashmir DGP Dilbagh Singh said that the IED fitted car was destroyed by the Bomb Disposal Squads after the people living in the area were evacuated.
Drone camera footage of the IED-fitted vehicle being destroyed by the Indian security forces was accessed. The footage gives a clear idea of where the incident took place at Aayangund Rajpora, Pulwama. The visuals show how a white Hyundai Santro was blown up with the help of a controlled detonation, and the size of the blast is evident.
Jammu & Kashmir DGP Dilbagh Singh added that the modus operandi was similar to that of the heinous February 2019 Pulwama terror attack, pointing out that once again it was a car that was used. Sources further said that a fake number plate was used on the car to mislead the investigation. It was a scooter’s number plate that was being used, informed sources.