India’s biggest hydroelectric project Bhakra Dam, located on the border of Himachal Pradesh and Punjab, is on the hit-list of Pakistan-based militant outfits such as the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and the Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD), an Intelligence Bureau (IB) report has said.
The IB alert was sent three months ago to various security agencies and the Himachal Pradesh and Punjab police.
The two states were asked to strengthen security at the dam and its surrounding areas to prevent any possible sabotage.
The Union home ministry has also called a meeting of senior officials from both states and Bhakra Beas Management Board (BBMB) on Tuesday.
BBMB director GS Wassan told HT: “The IB had prepared a report of the threat perception from terrorist groups to the various hydel dams located in Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir.”
The attack can come from both over and under the water, the report had warned.
“The LeT has also been training its cadres for cliff-climbing, swimming across water channels and handling of explosives with the intention to target major dams in India particularly those located in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh,” the IB report said.
The IB expressed concern over the “grossly inadequate” security measures and equipment at the dam. The dam’s security was being handled by multiple agencies leading to confusion and dilution of responsibility. There should be a single agency responsible for security of the entire project, the report suggested.
BBMB authorities have stepped up vigil at the dam and also sought modern equipment from the Centre to detect any possible sabotage. “Considering the 90-km radius of the water reservoir it would be difficult for anyone to pose any serious danger to the dam,” Wassan said.