Jaish-e-Mohammed's (JeM) Sajjad Ahmad Khan, a close aide of Pulwama attack mastermind Mudassir Ahmad Khan, was planning terror attacks in different parts of India, including Delhi-NCR, the NIA claimed in its charge sheet in a case of conspiracy filed before a Delhi court on Monday, 16 September.
Sajjad is also suspected to be involved in the conspiracy of Pulwama attacks.
Forty Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel were killed in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama district after a JeM terrorist rammed an explosive-laden vehicle into their bus, which was part of a convoy going to Srinagar from Jammu on 14 February.
The charge sheet was filed against four JeM operatives under sections 120-B (criminal conspiracy) and 121 A (waging, or attempting to wage war, or abetting waging of war, against the government of India) of IPC, and various sections of stringent Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) and sections of Explosives Substances Act.
Case Pertains to Strategies of Senior JeM Leaders
Mudassir was the mastermind behind this conspiracy but charges were abated against him after he was killed in an encounter with the security forces in March, 2019, the agency said in the final report.
This case pertains to a criminal conspiracy hatched by senior commanders of JeM to carry out terror attacks in different parts of India including Delhi-NCR.
The charge sheet names Sajjad Ahmad Khan, 27, Tanveer Ahmed Ganie, 29, Bilal Ahmad Mir, 23, and Muzaffar Ahmad Bhat, 25 — all residents of Pulwama.
“Investigation has established that the accused persons are members of proscribed terrorist organization JeM, who were planning to carry out terrorist attacks and also propagating the activities of JeM,” said NIA.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) claimed that Sajjad and Muzaffar Ahmad Bhat were directly in touch with Mudassir, while Tanveer Ahmed Ganie and Bilal Ahmad Mir were in contact with Mudassir through Sajjad.
“Tanveer Ahmed Ganie and Bilal Ahmad Mir wanted to carry out fidayeen attacks similar to Pulwama Attack. The two elder brothers of Sajjad Ahmad Khan were also active JeM terrorists who were killed in two different encounters with security forces.
“Thereafter, he joined JeM and was directed to conduct reconnaissance in Delhi-NCR area,” NIA added.
The three brothers were initially engaged in stone pelting, it added.
During investigation, two detonators were seized at the instance of Bilal Ahmad Mir, it said, adding that further investigation against other accused is still on.
‘Sajjad Disguised as a Shawl Vendor in Delhi’
The agency also said that Sajjad was arrested near the Lajpat Rai market by Delhi police and is believed to have been in regular touch with the terror strike mastermind before and after the attack.
“On Mudassir’s instructions, Sajjad had moved to Delhi and lived here under the guise of a shawl vendor to establish a sleeper cell of JeM,” the police had said.
On the day of Pulwama incident, Mudassir contacted Sajjad on WhatsApp and informed him about the attack on CRPF convoy, it had said.
The police said that he was also tasked with radicalising and recruiting Muslim youth from UP and other states, provide them weapons training, explosives and field craft, raising funds and collecting weapons, the police had added.
Mudassir had reportedly instructed Sajjad to spot young Kashmiri youths for fidayeen attacks.