Co-owner of truck used in Udhampur terror attack arrested in Kashmir

  • Toufiq Rashid, Hindustan Times, Srinagar
  • Updated: Oct 14, 2015 23:55 IST
Security forces during a terrorist attack on a convoy of Border Security Force (BSF) on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway in Udhampur district of Jammu and Kashmir. (PTI Photo)

The Jammu and Kashmir Police arrested the co-owner and conductor of a truck used in the militant attack on a BSF convoy in Udhampur in August, which had left two soldiers dead.

Sabzar Ahmad Bhat was arrested from south Kashmir’s Kulgam district. He carried a bounty of Rs 2 lakh on his head.

A resident of Nai Basti in Qaimooh village, Bhat was on the run since the attack.

The truck was used by captured Pakistani militant Mohammad Naveed and his accomplice Mohammad Noman alias Momin. While the latter was killed in the attack, Naveed was arrested. Both militants belonged to the banned Lashkar-e-Taiba outfit.

In August, the National Investigating Agency (NIA), handling the case, had arrested another truck driver Khursheed Ahmad, who had reportedly driven Naveed to Jammu on two occasions, including the day before the attack on the BSF bus.

Sources said Ahmad, a resident of Awantipora in south Kashmir’s Pulwama, was an over-ground worker of the Lashkar. Another driver, Showkat Ahmad, was also earlier arrested by the NIA.

A group of four LeT militants — Mohammad Naveed Yakub, Zhargham alias Mohammed Bhai, Abu Okasa and Noman -- had entered India from Baba Reshi in Baramulla district of north Kashmir. The group split into two, of which one carried out the attack in Udhampur on August 5.

Meanwhile, the special NIA court in Jammu on Wednesday allowed the jail superintendent’s plea to lodge Naveed and his two accomplices away from other prisoners.

The superintendent of Kotbalwal jail in Jammu district had moved the application to transfer Naveed, Showkat Ahmad and Khurshid Ahmad, to the observation block instead of the general barrack with other inmates.

The prison official pleaded that other inmates could pose a threat to the lives of three accused. Judge YP Kotwal allowed the transfer.

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