Indo-Pak secy level talks in Islamabad

Indo-Pak secy level talks in Islamabad
Bhavna Vij-Aurora
New Delhi, November 24, 2008

Armed with a detailed report on investigations into Samjhauta Express blast last year in which 68 people – mostly Pakistani nationals – were killed, Home Secretary Madhukar Gupta has left for Islamabad on Monday.

He will be holding talks with his Pakistani counterpart, Federal Secretary Interior, Syed Kamal Shah on Tuesday. Sources said that though there is not a very rigid agenda for the fifth round of home secretary level talks between the two countries, India is expecting Pakistan to raise the issue.

“Pakistan has raised this issue several times with India during talks at various levels. So far, we did not have anything concrete to tell them. Even now, though things are not very concrete, at least some headway has been made,” disclosed a senior home ministry official.

However, it is also somewhat embarrassing for the Indian side since the needle of suspicion is now on Hindu terrorists, and not the Muslim ones as the investigating agencies had suspected. “We have told them each time that it is probably Bangladesh-based HuJI and Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Toiba. Now it will be a complete U-turn,” the official added.

The talks are part of the on-going composite dialogue process between the two countries. The last home secretary level talks between India and Pakistan were held in July 2007 in New Delhi.

Home Ministry’s Additional Director General (Media & Communications) Onkar Kedia said that these talks will be held in the backdrop of recently initiated cross-LoC trade, which is a big step towards bringing people closer. “The talks seek to intensify efforts on the part of both the countries to discuss issues relating to terrorism, counterfeit currency, drug trafficking, exchange of prisoners and visa regime,” he said.


Kangan attack: Policeman succumbs

Kangan attack: Policeman succumbs

Srinagar, Nov 24: A policeman, Ghulam Hyder, who was injured in a grenade attack at Kangan last week , succumbed at SK Institute of Medical Sciences here this morning.

Hyder was among the four people who were injured in a grenade attack at Kangan Bazar on November 21, the last day of electioneering in two Assembly segments of Ganderbal and Kangan, which went to polls yesterday.

Two die in bomb blast in Kannur District

Two die in bomb blast in Kannur District

Kannur (Kerala) (PTI): Two persons were killed as a crude bomb exploded near a temple at Kannavam in the district on Monday, police said.

The incident occurred around 7.30 am near the Athyarkavu temple located in Kannavam police station limits, about 35 km from here. Senior police officials have rushed to the spot.
Details of the incident were not immediately available, police said.

Now, terrorists target thermal imagers

Now, terrorists target thermal imagers
11/6/2008 8:33:37 AM

The thermal imaging cameras at the International Border in the Jammu region have captured images of militants sneaking across the border from Pakistan in to India. More shockingly, the images show that the terrorists are now targeting the cameras, so as to not be detected.

TIMES NOW has accessed the footage shot by the thermal imaging cameras that revealed militants caught moving surreptitiously along the International Border.

But the footage showed that on being challenged by the forces, the militants not only fired back at the jawans, but also a rocket at the thermal imaging monitor, which caught them sneaking in and alerting the security forces. They, however, missed the target, the footage showed.

Phukraj, a Border Security Jawan on duty said, “I was on duty at night when I noticed movement on the thermal imagers. I then alerted the rest.”

This is the third time in the past two months when thermal imagers have helped BSF men track down the movements of militants.

AK Sarollia, IG, BSF said, “This was an attempt at a forced intrusion but we managed to scuttle it. Even in September there were similar infiltration attempts which we managed to scuttle.”

“Several militants are sitting on launch pads and waiting to cross over to this side,” Rajendra Kumar, IG Jammu accepted.

While the militants managed to sneak back into the Pakistani side of the border, the Indian army does not rule out more such attempts; especially as Jammu and Kashmir polls are just around the corner.

Lt Col arrested for Malegaon blast

Lt Col arrested for Malegaon blast
6 Nov, 2008, 0332 hrs IST, ET Bureau

MUMBAI: The Mumbai Police on Wednesday arrested a serving Lieutenant Colonel for

allegedly supplying money and explosives for the September 29
Malegaon blast. This
is the first instance of an army officer being held in connection with with a terror attack.

ATS began interrogating Purohit after his name cropped up in investigations following the arrest of two retired army officers for their role in the Malegaon blasts. The Maharashtra ATS placed Lt Col Srikant Purohit under arrest after questioning him for his alleged role in supplying money and explosive material for the explosion.

Purohit was produced before a Nashik court where he was remanded to 10 days of police custody. The court also allowed the police to subject him to narco-analysis tests. The court has also ordered scientific tests on Purohit.

Chief Judicial Magistrate K D Boche allowed the ATS to conduct polygraph, brain-mapping and narco analysis of Purohit and remanded him to police custody till November 15. Purohit has been accused of transferring of huge amounts through ‘hawala’ to Ajay Rahirkar who is already in ATS custody.

He also sent SMS to ex-army officer Ramesh Shivji Upadhyay, also in ATS custody, after the September 29 Malegaon blast case was cracked by ATS saying “that we are on ATS radar,” Public Prosecutor Ajay Misar told the court.

Misar said the Malegaon blast is a sensitive case in which six persons died and many were injured. Even the forensic report revealed that explosives, including RDX, were found and it was necessary to get 14-days police custody of Purohit for interrogation.

He said Purohit conducted several meetings of ‘Abhinav Bharat’, a saffron group, in Madhya Pradesh, New Delhi, Gujarat. Purohit had also attended meetings in Pune, Kashmir, Mirzapur and Bhonsala Military School at Nashik where some of the accused were also present, Misar said.

In a ‘panchanama’ (statement) of Rakesh Dhawade, who is among the eight persons arrested by ATS, it was noted that four arms and live cartridges of Lt Col. Purohit were kept with Dhawade, the public prosecutor told the court.
Purohit was interrogated two days ago by ATS in connection with blasts in Malegaon and was arrested, Additional Commissioner of Police Parambir Singh said.

While Singh refused to give details about Purohit’s role in the blasts, Mumbai Police officials said the Lt Col, belonging to Maratha Light Infantry, was allegedly instrumental in helping organising people for the blasts. The army authorities were awaiting a formal information from the Mumbai police before they could begin departmental proceedings against him.

The army officer, who came under the scanner for his alleged role in the blasts, was stationed at the Army Education Corps Training College and Centre at Pachmarhi in Madhya Pradesh. He was doing a course in Arabic at the Army Education Corps College.

In Delhi, Deputy National Security Adviser Shekhar Dutt said the alleged involvement of the Army official in the crime was a matter of concern. “It is certainly a matter of concern nobody should consider themselves above law,” Mr Dutt told reporters.

The police are going ahead with the investigation into the Malegaon blast on whatever leads they had got, Mr Dutt said. He also said the police have the right to detain anybody they find to be on the wrong side of law. “To detain a person for questioning police have the right,” Mr Dutt said.

Lashker-e-Toiba’s tributes

Lashker-e-Toiba’s tributes


Srinagar, Nov 5: Lashker-e-Toiba Wednesday paid rich tributes to November 6, 1947 martyrs of Jammu.
In a telephonic statement, LeT spokesman, Dr Abdullah Gaznvi quoting LeT chief, Dr Abdul Wahid Kashmiri said, “It was on November 6, 1947 when Muslims of Jammu didn’t accept India’s claim on Kashmir and they were massacred. The sacrifices of the martyrs would be remembered in the pages of history in golden words.”
“Today whole nation is following the footsteps of Jammu martyrs,” he said and appealed the people to make Jamia Masjid Chalo programme a success.

At UN, India says elections alternative to plebiscite

At UN, India says elections alternative to plebiscite
Pakistan Seeks Implementation of UN Resolutions


United Nations, Nov 4: India and Pakistan clashed on Kashmir in a key United Nations committee with New Delhi telling Islamabad that the people of the state have already exercised the right of self-determination by participating repeatedly in ‘free and fair’ elections and raking up of the issue by Pakistan was ‘unwarranted.’
India’s delegate Rajeev Shukla told the UN General Assembly’s Social, Humanitarian and Cultural Committee that Pakistan’s advocacy for self-determination for people of Jammu and Kashmir is unacceptable and constitutes clear interference in the country’s internal affairs.
Participating in the debate on ‘self-determination’, Pakistan’s UN Ambassador, Hussain Haroon, stated, “In the recent spate of violence, forced on the Kashmiris following a cruel economic blockade, the Indian occupation forces have brutally killed innocent protesters and the Kashmiri political leadership was put behind bars to silence their protest.”
Describing Pakistan’s statement as “factually incorrect,” Shukla said they bear no relationship to reality.
“It would suffice to point out that the people of Jammu and Kashmir exercised their right to self-determination at the time of India’s independence and have since then repeatedly participated in free, fair and open elections at all levels,” he added.
Pertinently, leaders of mainstream political parties in Kashmir are seeking votes in elections on the issues of development and governance, stressing that polls have no relevance to the Kashmir issue.
“I may add that by introducing its unwarranted reference in our discussions the delegate of Pakistan is also harming the cause of the inalienable right of the Palestinian people to self-determination,” the Indian delegate told the UN and told Islamabad that it will never succeed in its efforts.
In his right of reply, Haroon said Jammu and Kashmir is an internationally recognised disputed territory according to several UN Resolutions. “The Security Council demand for free and fair plebiscite under UN auspices still remains to be implemented.”
He said that elections in Jammu and Kashmir have been rejected not only by the UN Security Council but also by the people of Kashmir.
“The right to self-determination cannot become an instrument to promote subversion and erode political cohesion or territorial integrity” of a state, Rajeev Shukla answered.
He also rejected Pakistan’s allegations of “suppression” of the people of state, saying Islamabad would have been better served by avoiding making comments about an integral part of India.
Pointing out that people of Kashmir have repeatedly participated in free and fair elections, he told Pakistan that in contrast, Islamabad denied even semblance of such rights to the people ‘in the part of Kashmir occupied’ by it.
Clashes over Kashmir were once a regular feature of debates in the United Nations but had almost ceased during the later part of former President Pervez Musharraf’s regime.