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Tuesday, Oct 15, 2019

Arms dropped by drones in Punjab’s Tarn Taran, were meant for Kashmir: Police probe

It is still not clear how the Khalistan Zindabad Force (KZF) planned to carry the weapons to Jammu and Kashmir.

chandigarh Updated: Sep 24, 2019 13:05 IST
Ravinder Vasudeva
Ravinder Vasudeva
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Punjab Police personnel taking accused Balbir Singh and Harbhajan Singh to court in Amritsar, September 23, 2019.
Punjab Police personnel taking accused Balbir Singh and Harbhajan Singh to court in Amritsar, September 23, 2019.(HT Photo )
         

The huge cache of arms, including five AK-47 rifles, and satellite phones dropped in Tarn Taran by drones from Pakistan, were mostly meant for Jammu and Kashmir, an initial probe by Punjab Police has revealed.

However, it is still not clear how the Khalistan Zindabad Force (KZF) planned to carry the weapons to Jammu and Kashmir.

“The interrogation of the accused has revealed that they were yet to get further directions from the handlers sitting in Pakistan to deliver the cache in J&K,” an official privy to the investigation said.

Punjab director general of police (DGP) Dinkar Gupta said the probe is being conducted from various angles keeping in mind the delivery of arms in neighbouring states.

NIA joins probe

“National Investigation Agency (NIA) has joined the probe and we are trying to connect different dots in our investigation,” said Gupta.

However, the DGP categorically said there is ample evidence that delivery of arms was backed by the Pakistani army.

The DGP said ever since India scrapped Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir, activities across the border in Punjab have increased manifold.

‘Drones used repeatedly’

The probe has also hinted that drones were being used to deliver arms for the past few days.

The interrogation of the accused has also disclosed that drones were sent to different locations in Tarn Taran and arms delivered from Pakistan were dropped at specific locations.

The probe team has also taken into consideration an old case of drone movement, which was spotted in April this year near Rattoke village in Tarn Taran district, which is around 1 km from the fencing line at the India-Pakistan border. Indian forces had tried to shoot the drone but the matter was kept secret, the official said.

First Published: Sep 24, 2019 00:50 IST

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