New Delhi, Sep 19 (IANS) The National Investigation Agency (NIA) will undertake a comprehensive probe into the terror attack in Kashmir that has left 18 soldiers dead and for which India has blamed Pakistan.
Informed sources said a six-member NIA team led by a Deputy Inspector General would start its investigation after it gets a nod from the Union Home Ministry.
The team, now in Srinagar, would probe the attack to corroborate the army’s primary investigation suggesting the attack was carried out by the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM).
In collaboration with the army, the NIA will start the probe from the beginning — who, if anyone, masterminded the attack, how the attackers infiltrated into Jammu and Kashmir and how they finally got into the army camp near the garrison town of Uri.
The four terrorists who were gunned down after the attack were said to be “foreigners”.
The sources said the NIA will initially begin its probe with a six-point agenda which would also include past terror attacks spread over six years and the “signature” of the suspected terror organisation.
A source said: “There is a similarity in the modus operandi of LeT and JeM but they have differences on some points.”
NIA officials are not doubting the army’s claims that the JeM was to blame for the Sunday massacre but they would still follow the mandatory investigation.
The NIA will also study the radio intercepts on the border by security agencies.
The NIA also plans to revisit the terror attacks on Kathua and Samba districts of Jammu region where army and police facilities faced terrorist strikes in 2015.
The Pathankot air base attack of January this year will also be reviewed because the JeM was blamed for that too.
The NIA will initially monitor the prima facie evidence and the arms and ammunition recovered from the spot.
The recoveries from the dead militants at Uri included 39 UBGL grenades, five hand grenades, two radio sets, two GPS devices, two maps and large quantities of food and medicines with Pakistani markings on them.
The Sunday massacre has pushed India-Pakistan ties to a new low. Prime Minister Narendra Modi declared after the killings that the perpetrators won’t go unpunished. On its part, Pakistan has denied its involvement.
(Rajnish Singh can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org)