Lucknow, Nov 16: Three Jaish-e-Mohammed fidayeens, who were planning to kidnap a VVIP politician of Uttar Pradesh to press for the release of 42 terrorists including Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, were today arrested from the state capital following a brief encounter with the Special Task Force of the state police.
State Director General of Police Vikram Singh said here the three are Pakistan residents and were on their way to Lucknow from the National capital in a car when the STF intercepted them near Gudamba near here.
They were trained specifically to kidnap a VVIP politician after gaining access to his/her office or residence. They were even shown footage of the politician's rallies and public meetings over internet to understand the finer points to carry out their designs.
The DGP, however, refused to name the politician when he was asked specifically about the Gandhis. ''I will neither comment nor contradict the name,'' he said.
''They were trained for a week to pick up techniques to kidnap a politician and to survive after the act...they were taught ways to eat food with one hand and to keep a stone in one for prolonged hours,'' the DGP said.
The STF recovered two AK 47 assault rifles, two Chinese Star pistols (a copy of the much acclaimed Soviet Tula Tukarev 33), 16 Chinese hand grenades, four kg of RDX and five detonators from them.
After the planned kidnapping, the terrorists were planning to invite two BBC scribes Altaf Hussain and Yusuf Jameel (Kashmiri) as negotiators. Besides the demand for the release of 42 JeM terrorists, the militants were also planning to start afresh tripartite talks between India, Pakistan and Kashmiri leaders, including Syed Ali Shah Gilani and Mirwaiz Omar Farooq. They had plans to invite two representatives each from the two factions and representatives from India and Pakistan.
They had plans to seek 5,000 dollars for each of the terorists released.
The STF has recovered three fake identity cards of Jammu and Kashmir government and three separate tickets of November 14 to travel between Jammu and New Delhi on the 2446 Uttar Sampark Kranti Express.
The 42 JeM militants on their wish list included Parliament attack convict Afzal Guru, Nasrullah Mansoor, Abdul Majid, Md Aslam, Mansoor Hussain, Khalid Mehmood, Yusuf Nepali, Abdul Latif, Akram Baluch and Abdul Hai.
''We had been regularly getting intelligence inputs about the movement of terrorists...when the input was confirmed, we set up a check point to nab them,'' the DGP added.