J&K Police arrest 8 absconding terrorists who blended into society for 30 yrs, more being traced

Arrests made as part of focussed operation by SAI & CID of Jammu & Kashmir Police. They've so far verified and identified 369 of a list of 734 such absconders in 327 TADA/POTA cases.

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New Delhi: The Jammu and Kashmir Police Thursday nabbed eight absconding terrorists who went underground and remained untraced for some time before blending into society and evading arrest for nearly three decades.

During this period, some of the arrested individuals had even secured government employment and contracts, while some others were discovered to be engaged in private business, and some were found employed in judicial courts.

The arrested terrorists include Adil Farooq Faridi (a government employee), Mohammad Iqbal, Mujahid Hussain, Tariq Hussain, Ishtiaq Ahmed Dev, Ajaz Ahmed, Jameel Ahmed, and Ishfaq Ahmed (working as a writer in Doda’s court complex). They are accused of various offences, including kidnapping and murder.

The arrests were undertaken as part of focussed operation to track absconding terrorists, led by a joint team of the State Investigation Agency (SIA) and the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the J&K Police.

Sources in J&K Police said the arrested terrorists and their associates were involved in serious crimes of terrorism and disruptive activities and had been booked under Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (Prevention) Act, or TADA, around three decades ago in different police stations of J&K’s Doda district and charge sheeted in Jammu’s TADA court.

The eight had managed to escape from the clutches of law for decades by going underground and resurfaced some time later to enjoy normal family life in their respective native villages or some distant places, the sources added.

According to them, the SIA has initiated a special drive to trace and produce before concerned courts all absconders in terrorism-related cases to face trial under law.

So far, the SIA has verified and identified 369 (215 in Jammu, 154 in Kashmir) out of 734 such absconders (317 in Jammu, 417 in Kashmir) in 327 TADA/Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) cases.

Of the 369 verified absconders, 127 remain untraced, 80 have died, 45 are residing in Pakistan or Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) and other countries, and four are lodged in jail.

Sources said that the SIA will also investigate how these terrorists managed to escape the law, live a normal life without being traced for so long, other aspects of larger criminal conspiracies and nexus thereof, and role of insiders, if any.

The SIA has been following every clue in the matter of absconding terrorists and the work involved included tracing events that took place several years ago with close support of human intelligence inputs, said sources, adding that efforts are on to track down the 127 absconders who remain untraced.

 

(This article was first published in The Print)

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