April 2017 News

Major Separatist Network Found Operating Out Of Kashmir Jail, Say Police

2 April 2017
NDTV
Nazir Masoodi

Srinagar: A major separatist network has been found operating from inside a jail in Kashmir's Baramulla, instigating unrest in the state, the police said. The clue to the network came after 16 cellphones were seized from the district jail after police carried out major crackdown in the district jail. The police said some hardcore terrorists and separatist prisoners used them to keep in touch with their handlers in Pakistan and help create unrest in the state. The police are trying to decipher the data after some WhatsApp calls were traced to Pakistan. 'There are a few militants there and we have recovered phones from them as well. They have WhatsApp and we can see they were in touch with some Pakistani numbers. We are looking into whole issue,' said Imtiaz Hussain, SSP Baramulla. Two of the cellphones were seized from hardline separatist leader Masarat Alam, the man allegedly behind the 2010 civilian unrest in Kashmir. He was released by the PDP government in 2015 and subsequently led a pro-Pakistan rally in Srinagar, causing a major political controversy. He was re-arrested after pressure from central Government. 'There are certain things which we have recovered from Masarat Alam as well. We are looking into it. Whatever legal requirements are to be done will be done' said Mr Hussain. arat Alam as well. The crackdown on Baramulla jail was carried out a week after terrorists raided the home of a jail officer and threatened his family with dire consequences if he didn't stop harassing inmates in the Baramulla jail. The attackers also burnt down the officer's car. It was the third incident of the kind in a span of several weeks. In March, at least a dozen terrorists had barged into the house of a police officer when he wasn't in, held his family hostage and vandalised the house. The family was told that since the police were 'damaging the property of the families of militants and those who give shelter to them' the terrorists would retaliate. On March 27, terrorists had also barged into the house of two brothers working in the police in south Kashmir's Shopian district, threatened their family and opened fire in the air.

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