Pathankot attack: NIA names JeM chief Masood Azhar, his brother in chargesheet
The NIA has filed a charge sheet against Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar and three others for carrying out the January 2 attack on an airbase in Pathankot.Updated: Dec 19, 2016 18:50 IST
The National investigation Agency on Monday filed formal charges against Pakistan-based terrorist outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) chief Maulana Masood Azhar, his brother Mufti Rauf Asghar and his two other key lieutenants — Shahid Latif and Kashif Jan — holding them responsible for the January 2 Pathankot airbase attack.
The chargesheet also named four terrorists, who the NIA said crossed over from Pakistan after being trained in Jaish camps there, as accused.
A statement issued by the NIA identified the dead terrorists as Nasir Hussain (resident of Vehari), Hafiz Abu Bakar (resident of Gujranwala), Umar Farooq (resident of Sanghar) and Abdul Qayum (resident of Sukkur) from Pakistan.
The agency said the names of attackers have not been sent up for trial as they are dead.
The NIA said a Red Corner Notice (RCN) has been issued by the Interpol for the arrest of the three accused Masood Azhar, Rauf Asghar and Shahid Latif and the RCN against Kashif Jan is in process.
The NIA said Masood Azhar, Mufti Abdul Rauf Asghar, Kashif Jan and Shahid Latif, along with other Jaish terrorists set up training camps in Pakistan and the Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir area, for recruitment and training of terrorists, in order to carry out terror attacks on the Indian soil.
The chargesheet states the attackers, after entering into India from Indo-Pak border near Simbal border outpost in Punjab, first hijacked a Toyota Innova taxi (PB06-G-0061), along with the driver, Ikagar Singh.
The attackers snatched the mobile phone of Ikagar Singh and used it for calling their handler, Kashif Jan and other senior operatives of the Jaish-e-Mohammad in Pakistan, on three Pakistan mobile numbers 923453030479, 923213132786 and 923017775253.
“Their vehicle met with an accident at the Dhusi turn near the Ravi River bridge. The terrorists brutally killed Ikagar Singh and dumped his body in the nearby bushes. Thereafter, the terrorists drove the damaged SUV and abandoned it at a service station at Kolian Morh in Pathankot district,” says the chargesheet.
Later, the attackers hijacked a Mahindra XUV vehicle of a Punjab’s superintendent of police, Salvinder Singh, and moved towards the airbase.
“They snatched the mobile phones of the occupants and used them to communicate with their handler, Kashif Jan, whom they referred as ‘Ustadji’ and other Jaish operatives of the JeM in Pakistan on the four Pakistan numbers — 923453030479, 923466746667, 923000957212 and 923024880619,” says the chargesheet.
After some time, the terrorists dumped Salvinder Singh and his cook Madan Gopal, at an isolated place in a forest area near Gulpur Simli village in Pathankot district, on way to the airbase.
However, they took the third occupant, friend of Salwinder named Rajesh Verma, along with them. When the terrorists learnt from Rajesh Verma that Salvinder Singh was a police officer, they informed their handler who directed them to go back and look for him but Salvinder Singh and Madan Gopal had already left the spot, therefore the terrorists resumed their journey to the airbase.
The terrorist dumped the XUV near the airbase and left a slip in it on which it was written, “Jaish E Muhamad Zindabad Tanghdar se le kar Samba Kathua Rajbagh Aur delhi tak Afzal Guru Shadeed Kay Jan nisar Tum ko meltay rahege. Insha Allah. A.G.S. (Afzal Guru Shaheed) 25-12-15 (sic)”.
The chargesheet says after getting inside the airbase, the terrorists hid themselves inside the ‘nallah’ and in the dilapidated shed till the time they launched the assault on the night of January 1 and 2.
“While the terrorists were hiding inside the Air Force station, at about 8.40am on January 1, one of the terrorists, identified by the name “Nasir”, tried calling the Pakistan telephone number 923466746667 in Pakistan using the snatched Indian mobile number but could not converse,” says the chargesheet.
The NIA found that the user of the Pakistan phone number 923466746667 is Khayam Bhatti @ Khayam Rasool @ Babar Bhatti. He runs a local merchandise shop (kirana) shop in Rum, Sialkot, Pakistan.
“At about 9.20am on again on January 1, Nasir, called the Pakistan telephone number 923000957212. In this conversation, the terrorist, Nasir, disclosed the names of his other three associates as Major, Abu Bakar and Umar,” says the chargesheet.
The NIA said in another conversation same day, he spoke to his mother for 18 minutes.
Nasir told his mother that they had infiltrated into the Indian territory at ‘do baje’ on Wednesday (which was 30.12.2015). He further told her that he had killed two persons referring to the deceased Ikagar Singh and the injured victim (Rajesh Verma), whose throat was slit by the terrorist but he survived.
He also spoke to another relative named Babar, and to another person who is referred to by the name Munna. Nasir also told his mother to to record his conversation on the mobile set.
“During his conversation with her, Nasir mentioned about one “Ustad” who was supposed to come to her with his “Wasihat” after his death. Nasir also asked her to host a “dawat” (feast) for his “derawala friends” after his death,” says the chargesheet.
By the time security forces managed to neutralised the terrorists, seven persons were killed and 37 persons were injured inside the airbase.
First Published: Dec 19, 2016 12:08 IST