Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday held a meeting with Union Home Minister Amit Shah, National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and others after a probe indicated that a group of terrorists, killed in Jammu and Kashmir a day before, were planning “something big” ahead of local elections in the union territory.
“Our security forces have once again displayed utmost bravery and professionalism. Thanks to their alertness, they have defeated a nefarious plot to target grassroots level democratic exercises in Jammu and Kashmir,” PM Modi tweeted.
Neutralising of 4 terrorists belonging to Pakistan-based terrorist organisation Jaish-e-Mohammed and the presence of large cache of weapons and explosives with them indicates that their efforts to wreak major havoc and destruction have once again been thwarted.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) November 20, 2020
The foreign secretary and top intelligence officials also attended the meeting. Sources said the investigation so far has indicated that the terrorists were plotting a strike on the anniversary of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.
The four suspected Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorists, who were hiding in a truck, were killed in a three-hour encounter with security forces on the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway near Nagrota early Thursday morning.
Two policemen were injured during the gunfight and the driver managed to escape. The police said it is likely that the terrorists were “planning a big attack” and that they were headed towards the Kashmir valley where local elections are due later this month.
The encounter started at around 5 am after the truck in which terrorists were travelling was intercepted by security forces personnel near the Ban toll plaza in Nagrota, on the outskirts of Jammu city, on the highway during a routine check, officials said.
Security forced had received inputs about the movement of terrorists from the Samba sector towards the Nagrota toll plaza.
A large number of weapons, including 11 AK-47 rifles, three pistols and 29 grenades, were recovered from them.
In the first polls since it was split into two union territories and had its decades-old special status revoked last August, Jammu and Kashmir will hold District Development Council (DDC) elections in eight phases between November 28 and December 19, and votes will be counted on December 22.
The prospect of the elections has been clouded by allegations that candidates not affiliated to the BJP have been kept under illegal detention citing security concerns and not allowed to campaign although the Lieutenant Governor has said he will address the complaints.