Four terrorists involved in a plot to target "influential Hindu leaders" could be hiding in the country, Delhi Police sources have said, days after two terror suspects were arrested from the national capital.
The terror plot involved eight people, the sources said, adding that a search is on for those yet to be caught. The unearthing of the plot days ahead of Republic Day celebrations has sent alarm bells ringing in the capital's security establishment.
The terror conspiracy came to light during an investigation into body parts found in Jahangirpuri area of northeast Delhi. A probe by Delhi Police Special Cell has found that the victim, yet to be identified, was beheaded on camera and the visuals were then shared with the terrorists' Pak-based handler.
The two arrested terrorists have been identified as Naushad (56), earlier jailed in murder and extortion cases, and Jagjit Singh (29), allegedly linked to Khalistani terrorists. Police sources have said that while Naushad was being handled by Sohail, an operative of Pakistan-based terror group Harkat-ul Ansar, Jagjit Singh was being guided by Khalistani terrorist Arshdeep Dalla.
According to police sources, several leaders from Punjab and Delhi were in the crosshairs of the terror group, and they had finalised the date and time to strike two of them. Police are also probing the possibility of a nexus between Khalistani outfits and ISI, Pakistan's intelligence agency.
According to police sources, Pak-based handlers may have used "dead-drop method" to supply weapons to the terrorists in the module. Three pistols, 2 hand grenades and live cartridges were found with Naushad and Jagjit.
Explaining the "dead-drop" method, the sources said instructions for the weapons drop were sent via Signal -- a messaging app -- and the location was shared through Google Maps. Two people were tasked with supplying the weapons and two others with dropping them at a particular location and sharing it with their handlers.
Investigation suggests that the arrested terrorists collected the weapons from a location in Uttarakhand that police are trying to zero in on.