Is there any connection between the rising incidents of violence in Rajasthan and conspiracies hatched from across the border in Pakistan?
This is a major question being probed by different intelligence agencies working in Rajasthan.
In the last few months, the desert state witnessed a series of incidents with communal clashes in Karauli, Jodhpur, Bhilwara, Udaipur and other places. At the same time, there are increasing instances coming out signifying the cross-border connection, primarily Pakistan, in most of these activities.
Recently, Abdul, PFI former district president of Bhilwara, was arrested by the police. Around 10 mobile numbers with a Pakistan connect were reportedly found in his mobile phone along with audio messages and WhatsApp chat. The call details were deleted from his phone and hence his mobile was sent to the IB. Police officials said that he was reportedly connected to the Dawat-e- Islami organisation, formed in Pakistan in 1981 which has spread its wings in India too. It is reportedly teaching radical lessons to youths via a Pakistani channel, confirmed sources.
“Even in the beheading of tailor Kanhaiya Lal in Udaipur recently by accused Mohammad Riyaz Attari and Ghouse Mohammad, they were reportedly found to have links with the Karachi-based Islamist organisation Dawat-e-Islami. He had visited Karachi in 2014. So far, we have detained five people, including the two prime accused,” Rajasthan DGP ML Lather was quoted as saying.
It was revealed that Ghouse was in touch with his Pakistani handlers. Around 8 to 9 Pakistanis were in contact with him according to the police investigation. They had also planned to kill another businessman from Udaipur. The accused’s mobile phone revealed all these connections which are being probed by the Rajasthan police. They are in NIA remand currently.
So is there any strong cross-border connection or is it simply the effect of polarisation?
While the NIA is probing all angles in the Udaipur murder along with a SOG team, the Rajasthan police is also investigating the increasing violence through a Special Investigation Team formed in May after the Karauli and Jodhpur clashes, said officials.
Three terrorists, Jubair, Altamas and Saifulla were arrested from Nimbahera with explosives and 12 kg RDX on March 30. All three were connected with Al Sufa which is said to be a terrorist organisation being guided by radicals from different nations.
In February, a spy was arrested from Kishangarh, Ajmer who was passing on information to Pakistan.
This Pakistani spy Mohammad Yunus was arrested from Nasirabad Army Camp in Rajasthan who issued parking slips to visitors and also used to send tactical information to Pakistan through WhatsApp. In return, he used to get money.
The Intelligence Bureau (IB) had received a tip that Mohammad Yunus, a resident of Kishangarh, is in contact with the Pakistani intelligence agency. When the IB monitored him, his activities were found to be suspicious. He was arrested after a thorough probe.
During interrogation, the sleuths learnt that he was in touch with Pakistani agencies and was giving information to their officers from his mobile phone. For this, a fake SIM was obtained.
In the latest case, one Abdul Sattar was arrested for sending strategic information about parts of Rajasthan to Pakistan through photos, videos and location. Pakistan’s intelligence agencies used to ask for information about places like Army Cantt, railway station, bus stand, air force and military bases.
Looking at the series of violent incidents in Rajasthan, police chief ML Lather had set up a six-member team in May to probe the recent incidents triggering communal tension and affecting law and order in Karauli, Bhilwara and Jodhpur cities in April and May.
While this committee is yet to submit its report, the NIA along with the SOG and other agencies is conducting a probe into the Udaipur horror.
As the probe continues, there are questions being asked if the violence is a result of interference by the neighbouring nation.
The local residents are scared about the violence.
Lakshita, a resident of Udaipur, speaking to IANS, said, “Our house was quite close to Kanhaiya Lal’s but just two days before the incident we had shifted. Those staying there are still in panic.”