(This was originally posted in Economic Times by Rahul Tripathi)
India is likely to highlight Pakistan’s inaction in curbing terrorism financing by raising the issue of the recent terrorist infiltration attempts in Poonch at the ongoing Financial Action task Force (FATF) plenary meeting at Paris. The anti-money laundering watchdog will review Pakistan’s performance in prosecuting and penalising financing of terrorist groups such as Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) and Hizbul Mujahideen.
Nine soldiers have died amid a spurt in targeted attacks on civilians by terrorists and an ongoing counter-insurgency operation in the forest belt of the twin border districts of Poonch and Rajouri. While the role of the LeT-backed The Resistance Force has been highlighted in the recent killings of civilians, the CRPF and J&K Police have rounded up more than 600 overground workers suspected to be linked to Hizbul Mujahideen, Jamaat-e-Islami and JeM, said people aware of the matter. Meanwhile, the authorities in Srinagar ordered internet restrictions in areas where militants are suspected to be holed up. The recent encounters in and on the outskirts of Srinagar, frequent cordon-and-search operations and targeted killings have sent the security grid into a tizzy.
“The state police informed that they are adopting a three-pronged strategy to contain the current cycle of violence. The security grid has been strengthened and groups responsible for the killings have been identified while non-locals have been shifted to shelter camps,” said a home ministry official. Union home minister Amit Shah during his J&K visit this week is expected to hold a review of developmental plans and a security audit with the UT administration, said people familiar with the development.
Officials also said that the home ministry is likely to transfer the probe into the killings of civilians to the NIA. “The investigation in these killings indicates a definite pattern leading to the terror angle. Therefore, the investigation may be assigned to the national anti-terror probe agency,” said a J&K police official.