Jammu: The Army’s military intelligence (MI) in Jammu and Kashmir has spotted at least four terror launch pads of Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) across the international border (IB). The launch pads are less than five kilometres from border outposts in the Samba region, where heavy shelling by Pakistan’s troops killed six people on Tuesday. Sources said that, according to an MI report, the launch pads had been spotted at Masroor Bada Bhai, Sukhmal, Chapral and Looni.
One of them is located just opposite the BSF BOP (border outpost) at Paharpur in Kathua’s Hiranagar sector. According to the report, heavily armed men dressed in camouflage had been seen getting dropped at Pakistan’s Nur-ul-Islam BOP via Masroor Bada Bhai. It added that, after the Army’s surgical strikes on September 29, terror commanders had changed their location from Pakistan occupied Kashmir (POK) to the territory across the international border in the Jammu region.
The aim was to avoid detection by India’s thermal imagers and mini unmanned aerial vehicles. MI sources said the four launch pads were set up by Lashkar-e-Taiba nearly two years ago, but were not operational as Lashkar did not send infiltrators to Jammu. Sources said the MI’s disclosures were also corroborated in the interrogation report (IR) of LeT founder Hafiz Saeed’s associate Abdul Qayoom, a resident of Sialkot district, who was arrested last month from the Jammu region.The IR said Saeed’s Jamaat-ud-Dawa had been sending its men to launch pads to explore Jammu as a possible target of terror activities.
“Radicalisation is being hammered into them (militants) by showing them Indian outposts and videos of violence in Kashmir. Their commanders have just changed locations from PoK areas across the IB. Everything else remains the same,” said a defence official. The launch pads across the border offer two training exercises, Daura-e-Aam and Daura-e-Khas, to prepare militants for terror strikes like those witnessed in Uri, Dinanagar and Pathankot.