Srinagar, Sept 2: The investitgations into the Udhampur attack in which a BSF convoy was attacked has revealed the extent of the network the Lashkar-e-Tayiba has in Kashmir.
The probe which is being carried out by the National Investigation Agency shows how deep rooted the Lashkar's network in Kashmir and the outfit has a point man at each and every step.
An officer of the NIA informed OneIndia after the arrest of a key operative by the name Showkat Ahmed Bhat that he was the one who oversaw the infiltration of the four terrorists- Mohammad Naved, Noman, Abu Okasha and Zargham.
Who is Showkat Ahmed Bhat:
Showkat Ahmed Bhat was arrested yesterday by the NIA. The 36 year old is a resident of Khadermoh PS Pulwama, Jammu and Kashmir.
According to the NIA, Bhat was involved in transporting the four terrorists from Baba Rishi in District Baramulla, soon after they had infiltrated into India from PoK.
After Naved, this is the second arrest made by the NIA. The NIA had also arrested Khurshid Bhat, a driver who had transported Naved and Noman to the attack site on August 5.
Khurshid and Showkat Bhat form part of the local network of the Lashkar in Kashmir. They are an extremely crucial part of the network.
In fact the module of the Lashkar is divided into several rungs in Kashmir and each one is handed out a separate task to undertake.
The vast local network:
While one part of the probe into the Udhampur attack does focus on the Pakistan link, the more important angle to be investigated is the local network.
Terrorists from Pakistan cannot infiltrate and carry out attacks with such ease unless and until there is a strong local mechanism in place.
The local modules have several "module bosses" and in the case of the Udhampur attack, the operation was headed by Abu Qasim who continues to be elusive.
Abu Qasim oversees the entire network and it is under him the likes of Showkat and Khurshid work. The job of a Showkat Bhat would be to oversee an infiltration and ensure that there are no hitches along the border.
Showkat ensured that the four terrorists were whisked away into the safety of their hideout in Kashmir.
The NIA says that the local network is vast and as their investigations progress, they would get information on some more people involved in this network.
The role of some officials is also likely to crop up during the probe and the NIA would try and ascertain the security lapses which led to the infiltration and attack.