Tip off from PoK led to longest surviving militantís killing

Tip off from PoK led to longest surviving militantís killing

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Qayoom Najar’s rivals in Hizbul leaked information to police via Whatsapp

Srinagar, 27 Sep 2017: The tip-off about Qayoom Najar, the longest surviving militant in Kashmir, crossing over the LoC from Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) was ’leaked’ to Indian security agencies from across the border by the slain commander’s rivals in Hizb-ul-Mujahideen.


Sources told Deccan Herald that the tip-off was received by a senior J&K police officer on Whatsapp some days back. "A militant commander from Sopore area, who crossed over to PoK a few years back, shared the information regarding Najar with the police officer on Whatsapp. He even revealed the route Najar would take to cross over the LoC," they said.



However, sources said, the exact date of infiltration by Najar was not known to the security agencies. "After receiving the input on Whatsapp, the police officer passed the information to the Army and a trap was laid to neutralize Najar. Finally on Tuesday army succeeded in killing Najar, who had for more than two decades remained elusive," they revealed.


In the summer of 2015, Najar had formed Lashkar-e-Islam (LeI) outfit after differences cropped up between Hizbul commanders in PoK and him. The LeI, headed by Najar, carried out attacks on mobile phone towers and also allegedly was involved in the killing of six civilians, including a separatist activist in Sopore.


He was expelled by PoK based Hizbul chief Syed Salahuddin blaming him for playing a key role in murdering innocent persons and indulging in character assassination of Hurriyat leaders and attacks on the telecommunication set-up in the Valley.


A senior police officer tracking the developments said after failing to control Najar and his group, the Hizbul commanders in PoK reconciled with him and asked him to visit Pakistan via Nepal for an "important meeting."


"By the end of 2015, Najar reached Pakistan and was apparently close to Salahuddin. After the killing of top HM commanders this year in Kashmir, Salahuddin directed Najar to return to Kashmir and take the reins of Hizbul. However, a faction within the Hizbul didn’t trust Najar as they feared he may again go out of control once he was back to the Valley," he said.


Asked how he survived for this long, the officer said, "Najar would keep on changing his appearance and would use wigs and move around meekly. In his lifetime, he didn’t trust anyone and never used modern gadgets like mobile phones."


43-year-old Najar was one of the most wanted militants in north Kashmir who had kept the police and the army on toes for years. He had reportedly married to the sister of a slain militant before he went over to Pakistan in 2015.


A resident of Sopore town, he had joined as an over ground worker (OGW) of Hizbul in 1992 at the age of 16 and initially would transport weapons and provide lodging for militants. Najar was arrested in 1994 and was later released but he re-joined active militancy in 1999.

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