With Hizbul down, Pakistan gives special emphasis to Lashkar’s TRF
New Delhi, May 08: With the Hizbul Mujahideen leadership down after the killing of Riyaz Naikoo, Pakistan is giving special emphasis to a new group called The Resistance Force that was launched in March 2020.
The first time that the agencies got to know about this group was in March 2020, when the police busted a module of The Resistance Front." The module was busted on May 23, 2020 at Sopore and it was found back then, it was linked to the Lashkar-e-Tayiba.
While the module was busted, its activities on the social media and Telegram channel continues unabated. A senior security official tells OneIndia that this group is the Lashkar-e-Tayiba which is operating under a new name. It is an age old trick of these groups to change names so that there is an element of surprise for the security agencies.
The group, however, indulges more in propaganda activity. On the groups, the members speak about the need to increase the resistance in Jammu and Kashmir, especially after the Centre on August 5, 2019, withdrew the special status.
The group also known as the JK Fighters is very active on the social media. During the raid in Sopore, the police arrested Ahtisham Farooq Malik, Shafqat Ali Tagoo, Musaib Hassan Bhat and Nisar Ahmad Ganai. A police official who questioned the four said that they were reporting to their handler in Pakistan. He goes by the name Andrew Jones and on the group, he operates under the ID of Khan Bilal. The group is called as TRF/JK Fighters-The Resistance Front.
Officials say that the group is used to recruit local youth for terror-related activities, especially in north Kashmir. There are messages on the group, which clearly instigate the locals into taking up arms and fighting the Indian forces.
The busting of the module in Sopore came in the nick of time. The persons who were arrested had received a consignment of arms from one Kabeer Ahmed Lone. They had collected it and handed it over to Farooq Malik in Kupwara. They were also in the process of receiving a consignment of six AK-47 rifles. During the interrogation, the arrested terrorists said that the plan was on accumulating the arms. They had also drawn up a hit list of prominent personalities, including politicians and were planning targeted hits, investigations also revealed.
Intelligence Bureau officials say that this group has cropped up for a variety of reasons. The Hizbul Mujahideen, the local outfit in J&K is on the verge of a shut down. With most of its top leaders killed by the security forces, the group has not been able to draw inspiration among the youth.
Further the infiltrations have been successfully stopped to a large extent by the Indian Army, despite Pakistan violating the ceasefire several times in a bid to provide cover fire to these terrorists. There are nearly 300 terrorists of both the Lashkar-e-Tayiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad along the border waiting to infiltrate. The launch pads were activated by Pakistan in the last week of March, but these terrorists have not found much success.
With the infiltrations getting tougher and the top terrorists in the Valley being cleaned up, The Resistance Front was launched.
Sources say that the members of this front had not planned any attack immediately. They were in the process of securing arms and ammunition and stocking them first. They were also in the process of recruiting a large number of youth and radicalising them. The agencies are on high alert and are carefully scrutinising the activities of this group both on the ground as well as the social media, the source also added.