JeM operative held in Pulwama attack case
JeM released the video after the attack to claim responsibility for it. The attack prompted India to carry out an airstrike on a JeM camp in Pakistan’s Balakot.Updated: Jul 08, 2020 00:59 IST
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Tuesday said it has arrested a Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) operative for allegedly harbouring and providing logistical support to the perpetrators of the February 2019 attack that left 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel dead in Jammu & Kashmir’s Pulwama and brought India and Pakistan to the brink of war.
In a statement, NIA said Bilal Ahmed Kuchey, the accused, allegedly harboured the perpetrators at his residence and provided them with high-end mobile phones to communicate with their Pakistan-based handlers and to record Adil Ahmed Dar’s video before he rammed an explosive-laden car into a CRPF vehicle.
JeM released the video after the attack to claim responsibility for it. The attack prompted India to carry out an airstrike on a JeM camp in Pakistan’s Balakot.
Kuchey, a resident of Pulwama’s Hajibal, is the seventh person to be arrested for the attack.
In the statement, NIA spokesperson Sonia Narang called Kuchey a terror associate. “The main perpetrators in the case stayed in his house and he further introduced them to other OGWs [overground workers] who provided safe houses during their stay and planning of the attack.” Narang added the perpetrators used the high-end phones for giving final touches to the planning and execution of the attack besides communicating with Pakistan-based JeM leadership as well as among themselves.
NIA last week arrested Mohammad Iqbal Rather for allegedly facilitating Muhammad Umar Farooq’s movement. Farooq, a key conspirator in the Pulwama case, infiltrated into Jammu & Kashmir in April 2018 and was killed in an encounter on March 29, 2019.
The others arrested in the case in February and March include Shakir Bashir Magrey, Mohammad Abbas Rather, Waiz-ul-Islam, Insha Jan, her father, Tariq Ahmad Shah.
Pakistani terrorist – Mohammad Umar Farooq (killed in encounter on March 29, 2019 along with IED expert Kamran) were given the responsibility to execute the attack while JeM’s area commander Mudassir Khan (killed on March 11, 2019) supervised the overall planning.