'Car used in averted attack belongs to Hizbul militant'

Car used in Pulwama-like attack that was averted belongs to Hizbul militant: Jammu and Kashmir police

Jammu and Kashmir Police on Friday said that the car used for an unsuccessful bomb attack in southern Pulwama district yesterday belongs to an active militant of Hizbul Mujahideen outfit.

“The Santro car used for IED belongs to Hidayatullah Malik, an active Hizbul Mujahideen militant who is a resident of Sharatpora, Shopian. He had joined militant ranks in July last year,” a senior police officer was quoted as having said by local news gathering agency GNS.

Also read — 2019-like suicide attack averted in Kashmir’s Pulwama

The car was not registered in Kashmir, but in the Jammu division of the J&K union territory, the police said. “The Hizbul militant, who is active in south Kashmir over the last two years and the owner of the car, is still at large, but efforts are on to nab him,” the officer added.

On Thursday morning, police averted a major fidayeen attack by detecting and defusing a car bomb in Ayangund village of Pulwama district. The video of the controlled blast captured by a drone camera was shared on media platforms. The blast was so huge that windows, doors and roofs of several houses in the vicinity were damaged.

After the recovery of the car, Inspector General Police (IGP) Kashmir Vijay Kumar said that a major incident of a “vehicle-borne IED blast”, akin to 2019's Pulwama-type attack, was averted by timely detection of the car fitted with explosives.

On February 14 last year, a vehicle being driven by a local Kashmiri fidayeen (suicide) militant Adil Ahmed rammed his vehicle packed with explosives into a paramilitary bus on the Srinagar-Jammu national highway in the same district. In the worst casualties suffered by the security forces in peacetime operations, over 40 CRPF personnel were killed and several others wounded.

“At least 40 to 45 kgs of explosive material was fitted in private vehicle jointly by Hizbul Mujahideen and Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorists in a bid to target security forces. Timely action of security forces averted major tragedy,” he added.

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