Ten Pakistani terrorists who sneaked into Gujarat on March 6 have been traced and three of them have been killed by security forces, television channels quoted government sources as saying on Tuesday.
Television reports said that Pakistan’s National Security Advisor Naseer Khan Janjua had shared the intelligence inputs with his Indian counterpart, Ajit Doval.
The government had rushed National Security Guard commandos to Gujarat on March 6 after intelligence reports said militants had sneaked into the state from Pakistan.
The inputs came after a Border Security Force patrolling team recovered an abandoned boat – allegedly from Pakistan -- off Koteshwar coast in Kutch.
On Tuesday, the television reports said the government sources did not reveal any details on the whereabouts as it could jeopardise the operation to hunt them down.
Union home secretary Rajiv Mehrishi could not be contacted despite repeated attempts and a home ministry spokesperson refused to offer any comments.
No details were provided on how they were identified or located and which police force was instrumental in neutralising them. No details were also given as to what happened to the dead bodies of the three alleged attackers who have been neutralised.
Top intelligence sources also denied knowledge about such an operation being conducted against alleged suicide attackers.
Gujarat’s long coastline renders it vulnerable to infiltration from the sea route – the land border with Pakistan is fenced. The terror alert brings back memories of the 2008 attacks in Mumbai, where 10 extremists reached India’s financial capital on a boat from Pakistan and launched strikes that killed 166 people.
The terrorists are reportedly members of the Lashkar-e-Taiba or LeT and Jaish-e-Mohammed or JeM.
Pakistan’s disclosure about the men is seen as an attempt to prove it is genuine in its offer to prevent India from attacks planned across the border. In January, seven military personnel were killed in a deadly assault by Pakistani terrorists at the air force base in Pathankot in Punjab, where military high-value assets including fighter jets are stationed.
India has agreed to a visit by Pakistani investigators assigned to examine the evidence at the air force base by Pakistani Prime Minister Nazwaz Sharif.