Pakistan-based terror group Laskar-e-Taiba has issued a warning to the Baramulla SHO for facilitating an operationon Monday in which at least 44 have been arrested for terror-related activities.
It was a multi-agency crackdown in the old town of Baramulla in north Kashmir on Monday. After 700-odd houses were searched, security agencies seized petrol bombs, Chinese and Pakistani flags, LeT and Jaish letterpads, illegal mobile phones and other seditious material, defence spokesperson Manish Kumar said.
The crackdown was part of a joint operation by the Army, the BSF, the CRPF and police in 10 localities, including Qazi Hamam, Ganai Hamam, Taweed Gunj and Jamia, considered safe havens for terrorists
A large number of suspected hideouts were also busted during the search operation, Col Manish added.
However, according to locals, around 1am on Monday, the security forces jointly laid siege to the entire old town. “An announcement was made about the crackdown and people were asked to stay indoors. The personnel conducted house-to-house searches,” a local said.
Before entering the old town, the forces had sealed the bridges connecting it with the Civil Lines area to restrict public movement, they said. “The forces checked the youngsters for pellet injuries and similar wounds to identify those who had participated in protests and resorted to stone-pelting,” another local claimed. Sources said the crackdown was the first major one in Baramulla in more than a decade.
Police, however, claimed that the search operation was launched to nab militants. “We had information about the presence of militants in the area. It was an anti-militancy operation aimed at nabbing some Jaish-e-Mohammed militants who had taken refuge in the area,” Baramulla SSP Imtiyaz Hussain Mir said.