- Security forces prevented car bomb attack in J&K's Pulwama
- Vehicle was carrying over 20 kg of improvised explosive device
- It was a joint operation by the army, police and paramilitary forces
Security forces prevented a massive car bomb attack in Jammu and Kashmir's Pulwama on Wednesday night after they stopped a vehicle carrying 40-45 kg of improvised explosive device (IED). The plan had chilling similarities with last year's terror attack in Pulwama, when over 40 soldiers were killed as a suicide bomber drove a car full of explosives into a CRPF convoy.
Based on intelligence inputs, a white Hyundai Santro car with a fake registration number was signalled to stop at a check point on Wednesday night, but it tried to accelerate and go through the barricade, the police said.
"The security forces opened fire. The driver managed to escape, leaving behind the car laden with IED," Inspector General of Police Vijay Kumar said. "We got intelligence about a possible attack. We were looking for a vehicle with IED since yesterday," he added.
"The terrorist intended to target vehicles of security forces. We are calling expert teams from outside. We suspect that the vehicle was carrying 40-45 kg of explosives," news agency ANI reported quoted Mr Kumar. He said the driver is suspected to be a Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist, who is also in touch with Jaish-e-Mohammed that was involved in last year's suicide attack on the CRPF convoy.
The car, along with the IED, was later destroyed by a bomb disposal squad. The massive explosion damaged several houses in the area.
"It (car) was kept under watch for the night. People in nearby houses were evacuated and the vehicle was destroyed on site by the bomb disposal squad as moving it would have been a serious threat," Director General of Police Dilbag Singh said.
#WATCH J&K: In-situ explosion of the vehicle, which was carrying IED, by Police in Pulwama.— ANI (@ANI) May 28, 2020
Major incident of vehicle-borne IED explosion was averted by Police, CRPF & Army after Pulwama Police got credible info last night that a terrorist was moving with an explosive-laden car pic.twitter.com/UnUHSYB07C
Mr Kumar said it was a joint operation by the army, police and paramilitary forces.
After the terror attack in the same district on February 14, last year, India bombed a camp of the terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed deep inside Pakistan. An air battle also followed between Indian and Pakistani fighter jets.
In the last two months there has been a spurt in terror attacks in Jammu and Kashmir; 30 security forces personnel including officers have lost their lives. During this period, 38 terrorists have also been shot dead by security forces.
Riyaz Naikoo, one of Kashmir's most wanted terrorists and the commander of terror group Hizbul Mujahideen, was killed during an encounter in Pulwama earlier this month.
The spurt in terror attacks amid reports of infiltration by highly-trained terrorists from Pakistan poses a major security challenge even as the country fights the coronavirus crisis.