NIA probe detects role of Pak-based LeT handlers in Reasi terror attack on pilgrims

New Delhi/Jammu: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) probing the terror attack on pilgrims in J&K’s Reasi district has brought to the fore the role of Pakistan-based handlers of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) outfit.

Terrorists on June 9 attacked a pilgrim bus returning from the Shiv-Khori temple in Reasi. The terrorists first killed the driver of the bus and after that, the bus dropped into a gorge. The terrorists kept firing at the pilgrims for over 20 minutes killing nine and injuring 44 pilgrims.

Sources have said that the NIA investigation of Hakim Khan alias Hakim Din, a local, has revealed that he provided, shelter and logistics support, gave food to the three terrorists and also did a recce of the area for them.

“Khan accompanied the three terrorists to the attack spot. Before they stayed with him at least on three occasions after June 1, when the terror attack was being planned,” said sources.

Disclosures made by Khan led to searches at five locations connected with overground workers (OGWs) and hybrid militants.

The role of two Pakistan-based LeT handlers, Saifullah alias Sajid Jatt and Abu Qataal alias Qataal Sindhi, came to the fore during the interrogation of Hakim Khan, NIA officials said.

After the order from the Ministry of Home, the investigation of the Reasi terror attack was taken over by the NIA on June 15.

In another incident, seven people belonging to the Hindu community were killed and several others injured when terrorists attacked Dhangri village in Rajouri district of Jammu division on January 1 last year.

Sajid Jatt and Qataal have already been named in a charge sheet filed by NIA in connection with its probe related to the attack on civilians in J&K’s Rajouri district in 2023.

NIA is now in the process of registering a case to investigate last year’s terrorist attack on an Army convoy in Poonch in which five soldiers were martyred.

A team of NIA officers were assisting the local police in its probe into the terrorist attack on an Army vehicle in Kathua district on Monday.

Five soldiers, including a JCO, were killed and an equal number injured in the Kathua terror attack

IANS

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