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Terrorists Slashed My Throat, Left Me To Die: Abducted Jeweller To NDTV

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Terrorists Slashed My Throat, Left Me To Die: Abducted Jeweller To NDTV

Rajesh Verma said all through the journey the men made calls using five phones - one snatched from him, two from the police officer.

Pathankot:  On their way to the Pathankot air base, the terrorists slit the throat of 40-year-old jeweller Rajesh Verma and left him for dead. He lived.

"They slashed my throat and when the blood spurted, they said 'leave him here, He'll be dead in a minute'. Then they left me in the car and walked off," Mr Verma told NDTV.

After midnight on Thursday last, a group of terrorists stopped the SUV of Punjab police officer Salwinder Singh and abducted the three men inside. Mr Verma was driving the car. The abductors dumped Salwinder Singh and his cook Madan Gopal in a forest, but drove off, leaving Mr Verma bound and blindfolded in the backseat.

"They said they don't harm the elderly, women or children. The SP's beard had come out of its roll and he looked older," said Mr Vera, now at his home in Gurdaspur, neck heavily swathed in bandages.  

He said all through the journey the men made calls using five phones - one snatched from him, two from the police officer. They called someone whom they addressed as "Commander", he said.

"I didn't understand much, they were talking in Urdu," he said. "But they were talking of the air base. They did not ask for directions." Asked whether the militants used GPS, he said, "They perhaps lost their way once. The man driving said it was not the right way. Then they activated (the GPS)."      

The terrorists also called his wife, Mr Verma said. "We are his friends. He will be back home within an hour' they told her," he said, adding, "They even told me I could pick up the officer and cook on my way back."

"But around 4 am then they stopped, and one of them ordered another to kill me. When I struggled, they hit me with the butt of a gun," the jeweller said.

But he managed to crawl out and made his way to a nearby gurdwara. His family was informed and he was admitted to a local hospital, where he stayed for three days.

Mr Verma said they were abducted by four men. The terrorists are believed to have attacked the air base in two groups of four and two men each. All six were killed in military operations, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said today.

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