Pakistan-based Khalistani terror groups have been sent 80kg of weapons in Punjab across the border since September 9 by Chinese drones. Punjab police so far nabbed five people in connection with the drone drops.
According to Hindustan Times, eight payloads were dropped in Amritsar and Tarn Taran. This activity was supported by the Pakistan’s spy agency Inter Services Intelligence and orchestrated through Germany and Lahore.
After investigation it is found that Chinese drones with 10kg payloads were used to dropdown the arms and ammunition across the border. Hindustan Times reports that according to investigation the drones may have launched from location two kilometres inside Pakistan and made the drone to travel the distance of five kilometres at a height of 2,000 feet, and then dropped off the weapons after descending to 1200 ft.
Given the international links and the ramifications of the conspiracy, the Chief Minister of Punjab Captain Amarinder Singh has decided to hand over the further investigations in the case to the National Investigation Agency (NIA) to ensure that the entire conspiracy is fully and expeditiously unraveled.
With initial investigations revealing the use of drones to deliver weapons and communication hardware from across the border, the Chief Minister has also urged the Central government to direct the Indian Air Force and Border Security Force to launch necessary counter-measures to check any further hostile drone activity in the border state of Punjab.
Director General of Police Dinkar Gupta said the large-scale infiltration appeared to have been aimed at scaling up terrorism and militancy in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and the Indian hinterland, in the wake of the recent developments in the Kashmir Valley. He said the police operation was based on different inputs gathered from sources that activists of the banned KZF planned to carry out multiple terrorist strikes in Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab and other states.
In an operation carried out by Amritsar AIG (Counter Intelligence) Ketan Baliram Patil along with various Punjab Police teams based in Chandigarh, four module members have been arrested and a large quantity of arms, ammunition, explosives and communication devices have been seized by the police.
Gupta said the module was backed by the Pakistan-based chief of KZF, Ranjeet Singh, and his Germany-based associate Gurmeet Singh, who had re-organised their outfit to revive terrorism in Punjab. With the help of local sleeper cells, they had spotted, radicalised and recruited local members, besides arranging funds and sophisticated weapons from across the border for operationalising the local module members.
Those arrested have been identified as Balwant Singh, Akashdeep Singh, Harbhajan Singh and Balbir Singh. Both Akashdeep and Baba Balwant Singh have a criminal past with multiple criminal cases against them.
Altogether, five AK-47 rifles, along with 16 magazines and 472 rounds of ammunition, four Chinese made .30 bore pistols, along with high magazines and 72 rounds of ammunition, nine hand grenades, five Thuraya satellite phones and Rs 10 lakh fake Indian currency notes have been recovered from them, the police said.
Punjab Chief Minister on Tuesday urged Home Minister Amit Shah to ensure necessary action in the 'incidents'. Taking to Twitter Singh stated that the drone incidents are just one of Pakistan's "sinister designs" following the abrogation of Jammu and Kashmir special status under Article 370.
"Recent incidents of Pakistan-origin drones dropping consignments of arms and ammunition is a new and serious dimension on Pakistan's sinister designs in the aftermath of the abrogation of Article 370. Request Amit Shah Ji to ensure that this drone problem is handled at the earliest," Singh tweeted, according to ANI.
(Inputs from agencies)