Ultras' bodies may be booby-trapped

Ultras' bodies may be booby-trapped

Bodies of terrorists are still lying untouched in the Pathankot Air Force base as security agencies suspect they are booby-trapped and fear a rerun of the killing of NSG commando Lt Colonel E K Niranjan if they go ahead without adequate precaution.

The security personnels’ inability to recover the bodies have slowed down the process of identification of the terrorists. While there are four bodies, two terrorists have been blown into pieces by the security personnel through explosives.

At least half-a-dozen terrorists, who are suspected to be members of the Pak-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), had attacked the airbase on January 2. The operation to flush them out took almost four days and the incident had raised questions about the entire operations as well as the precautions taken to tackle such incidents. Official sources said the agencies are moving cautiously in recovering the bodies. They do not want a repeat of the incident that took the life of the NSG commando.  Lt Col Niranjan, who was not wearing a bomb suit, was killed when a grenade exploded when he reversed the body of one of the terrorists. Security experts said it appears that Pakistani terrorists have not used such a tactics during terror attacks. “The terrorist might have removed the pin and kept the grenade under their body after they fell,” an official said. With the NIA taking over the probe, officials said, one of the prominent task for the investigators would be to identify the route through which the terrorists sneaked into India.

The BSF has said in its report that there was no breach on its fences and was exploring whether any tunnel was dug.

The NIA probe will also look into whether there was any lapse on the border. Another issue that would be on the minds of NIA investigators would be how terrorists managed to sneak in around 50 kg of ammunition, AK-47s that were improvised as mortar launchers and magazines. Sources said the terrorists might have entered through Barpani Nullah, which runs through the periphery of the airbase’s wall.

Going ahead with its probe, the NIA on Wednesday questioned Superintendent of Police Salwinder Singh who was abducted by the terrorists. The investigators recreated the scene of his abduction and visited the border village from where the terrorists were believed to have sneaked into India.
 

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