Firebrand all-woman separatist organisation Dukhtaran-e-Millat (DeM) chief Asiya Andrabi on Sunday claimed that people from Al Qaeda approached her for a joint jehad from Pakistan and she shooed them away for "waging a war against Pakistan".
"Some people from Tehreek Taliban Pakistan (TTP) came to me from Saudi Arabia. They told me that they were actually from al-Qaeda and wanted to start Guzwah-e-Hind from Pakistan," said Andrabi in an interview to a Srinagar-based website.
She did not mention the date of the meeting, but the TTP started in Pakistan during former president Pervez Musharraf's tenure. It seems the meeting took place in the last few years only.
She claimed these "al-Qaeda" people posed as journalists from Saudi Arabia-based newspaper Saudi Gazette. "They were five-six people and gave me a pen drive and showed some lectures of Sheikh Osama's (bin Laden) and his subordinates. I told them if you want to start jihad from Pakistan, then please get out from here," she said.
Andarbi's DeM is major woman separatist organisation active since 1989. Andrabi, motivated by the 1979 Iranian revolution, was in the forefront in 1990s to stop women from joining militancy ranks.
On the Pakistan government arresting Andrabi's family members in Pakistan this year for alleged al-Qaeda links, she said, "Shoaib Andrabi was arrested and my sister, her daughter-in-law, children and her maid were taken to a safe place.
"My brother-in-law Dr Mujhid Gilani is in hospital but there is no news of his son Irtiyaz Gilani, who was studying aeronautical engineering. Pakistan police claim Irtiyaz fled while shooting, but I confirmed and it was not true."
Andrabi said, "As far as al-Qaeda's global jihad is concerned, I don't think there's anything wrong if Irtiyaz would have been involved."
The DeM chief, while commenting on the likelihood of Taliban coming to Kashmir after the US troops' withdrawal from Afghanistan, said, "When Afghan Taliban or al Qaeda comes to Kashmir, we should keep in mind that the roadmap or agenda should be ours."
She said, "Before they (Taliban) enter here, there should be a debate with them. We must clear ourselves to them that there should be Islam in Kashmir not to propagate any ideology. It should be purely based on Islam."
Andrabi is the wife of separatist Ashiq Hussain Faktoo, who has already spent 20 years in jail, and is facing a life-time imprisonment for his role in the murder of human rights activist lawyer HN Wanchoo in 1992.