Terror outfit threatening Pulwama residents, probe agencies alert forces

Sumit Kumar Singh
New Delhi, Dec 22 : Indian intelligence agencies have alerted the security establishments that a terror outfit — The Resistance Front (TRF) — has started threatening the residents of Jammu and Kashmir for siding with the security forces.

TRF, a newly created terror outfit based in Pakistan, has released names of residents from JU&K’s Pulwama district, terming them as “traitors” and warned them “not to side with India”. Indian probe agencies have alerted the security establishments about the TRF list.

On February 14, 2019, Pakistan-based terrorist organisation Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar executed a terror attack in Pulwama in which 40 Indian troopers of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) were killed. The ghastly attack triggered action by the Indian Air Force (IAF) against a Jaish terror camp deep inside Pakistan 12 days later, and resulted in a dogfight between fighter jets of the two nations on February 27.

In September this year, social media accounts linked to TRF had released a hit list of 39 people, mostly comprising Valley-based journalists, political workers and activists, whom the militant group accused of being on the payrolls of Indian security agencies.

The 39 people named in the list have also been categorised as A+, A, B and C. This categorisation is similar to how the Jammu and Kashmir police slot militants based on the level of their involvement in militants activities. Then the local police had filed an FIR against unknown people in connection with a ‘hit list’ and a probe into the matter is on.

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Indian intelligence agencies had earlier stated that it was after the abrogation of Article 370 that Pakistan started a new terror front on social media and it was named as The Resistance Front.

Various reports have come out on its links across the Line of Control, many have corroborated that the TRF is supported and backed by the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT). Often claims have been made that the TRF even appears to be a proxy of the LeT.

“TRF is funded and backed by Pakistan,” a top counter-terror official in Kashmir had said.

The group is one of the several efforts, often repeated in the past two decades, to give terrorism in Kashmir an indigenous face and give the Pakistan deep state, blamed for supporting terror, an alibi, the official had said.

Since its appearance on social media platforms, the TRF has resorted to claiming high traction acts and owned up the terrorists active in the Valley.

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From claiming the grenade hurling in Srinagar’s Hari Singh High Street on October 12, to the next one within a fortnight that killed one civilian, TRF has been holding to every thread to associate itself with small and big terror incidents.

It is also known that their social media accounts, according to the internet protocol address, were being operated from Islamabad and that too mostly from an iPhone.

The connivance and support of Pakistan is clearly visible since Kashmir at that time was still under a lockdown and the internet had been snapped simultaneously to contain the propaganda.

It is not a new tactic that the moment a group surfaces, it makes a series of tall claims to set up and validate itself as the top rung among others. What differentiates TRF is the sheer planning and precision of execution.

“From nicely printed English announcements on a letter head with serial numbering to professionally made videos or audio messages are all tools used for enhancing their image as an organised and better ‘tanzeem’ (organisation) than others,” said a top officer of an anti-terror unit based in Kashmir.

( can be reached at sumit.k@ians.in)

Disclaimer: This story is auto-generated from IANS service.

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