Militant arrest triggers controversy

Last Updated: Sat, Mar 23, 2013 19:33 hrs

New Delhi/ Srinagar, Mar 23 (IBNS): The arrest of suspected terrorist Liyaqat Shah has triggered a controversy with the Jammu and Kashmir Police claiming that they knew about the militant's return to India from Pakistan via Nepal.

Negating the claims made by the Delhi Police, the Jammu and Kashmir Police reportedly said that Liyaqat was returning to Kashmir to surrender.

"We made it clear to the family that we could accept only the surrender of the militants who return from Pakistan and PoK, alone or along with their families, through the routes designated in the 2010 surrender-cum-rehabilitation policy of the State government. We made it clear to them that Nepal and Gorakhpur routes are not covered in the policy," top ranking sources in the J&K Police told The Hindu.

"But when they insisted, we decided to accept his surrender with the condition that he would not be entitled to the benefits of the surrender policy. Thereafter, we kept waiting for him till we got the news of his arrest by Delhi Police," the sources said.

The Delhi Police on Friday said Liyaqat was part of a group sent by Pakistan to launch terror attacks in India´s national capital New Delhi around Holi to avenge the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru.

Meanwhile, the Jammu and Kashmir government has sought details about Liyaqat´s arrest from the Delhi Police, media reports said on Saturday.

Speaking at the Jammu and Kashmir Legislative Assembly, state Home Minister Sajjad Ahmed Kitchloo said: ´´An officer of the rank of Superintendent of Police in Jammu & Kashmir Police cell in Delhi has been deputed to find out from Delhi Police as to how they were claiming that he had planned to carry out fidayeen attacks in the capital."

Arrested terrorist Liyaqat was a Hizbul Mujahideen member on the job of finding targets in Delhi for fidayeen attack, said Delhi Police Special Commissioner SN Srivastava at a press conference on Friday.

Srivastava said Liyaqat was staying in Pakistan where he went in 1997 and since then had been there getting training but crossed over to India occasionally.

"He is definitely Pakistan trained. Interrogation is on, probe is underway. We do not want to say it all now. We will share all these things in due course of time," he said.

Liyaqat was arrested when he came over to Gorakhpur.

Police said contrary to some reports he had not surrendered but arrested.

"We are still trying to find his terrorist activities. He is a militant since 1993," said Srivastava.

Police said raids were conducted on the basis of the information coughed up by the arrested terrorist.

The arrested terrorist had a Pakistani passport, said police adding that they have busted a Hizbul Mujahideen module.

Police said according to their intelligence tip-off the group in India is trying to avenge the hanging of Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru´s hanging.

A microSD card has also been recovered, said police.

The Delhi Police´s Special Cell recovered huge cache of explosives and weapons from a guest house near Jama Masjid in New Delhi. Several AK-47 rifles were recovered too.

"We started search operation from last night itself," said the official adding that more people can be arrested.

"We have CCTV footage of hotel [guest house] and outside both," he said referring to the recovery from the Delhi guest house where a man had checked it with the arms and ammunition.

Police have got 15 day custody of the arrested militant.

Earlier report said Liyaqat along with others had carried out recce for possible terror strikes at busy marketplaces during Holi.

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