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Close aide of Pulwama attack mastermind arrested in Delhi

Close aide of Pulwama attack mastermind arrested in Delhi
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NEW DELHI: The Delhi Police claimed to have arrested a Jaish-e-Mohammad cadre Sajjad Ahmed Khan (27), a close aide of Pulwama attack mastermind Mudasir Khan, from near Red Fort in Delhi. Special Cell which made the arrest on March 21 said that Sajjad was living in Delhi under the guise of a shawl vendor.

The police said that Sajjad, a resident of Tral in Pulwama, is also suspected to be involved in the conspiracy of Pulwama terror attacks.

Police said that NIA had registered a case on March 15 under section 120-B & 121-A IPC & 17, 18, 18A, 18B, 20, 38 & 39 UA (P) Act and named Sajjad Ahmad Khan as one of the accused along with Mudassir Khan and others. "Accused has been specially sent to Delhi to carry out reconnaissance of important targets and to set up a hideout in Delhi. This has been done to select specific targets and also to radicalise and recruit Muslim youth of UP and other states, provide them weapon training, explosives and field craft, raising funds and collecting weapons," said DCP Special Cell, Pramod Kushwah.

According to Police Sajjad and his two brothers were initially engaged in stone pelting incidents. On February 15, Sajjad's brother Ishfaq was arrested under PSA (Public Safety Act) for stone pelting and remained in Srinagar Jail for about 9 months. Ishfaq Ahmed Khan died in exchange of fire with security forces on April 25, 2018 in Lam, Tral, Pulwama along with two Pakistani militants. After the death of Ishfaq, his friend Mudasir Ahmad Khan used to frequently visit his residence in Pulwama and motivated Showkat and Sajjad Ahmad Khan to join the JeM. By the end of June 2018, Showkat also joined the JeM. Showkat Ahmad Khan also subsequently died in an exchange of fire with the security forces in September 2018. Mudasir instructed Sajjad to spot young Kashmiri youths for fidayeen attacks. Sajjad then motivated and recruited.

"On the day of Pulawama terror attack (Feb 14, 2019), Mudasir contacted Sajjad on WhatsApp and informed that they carried out attack on CRPF convoy. Mudasir then sent him the video of Adil Dar (fidayeen), which he deleted from his phone," said DCP Pramod Kushwah.

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