Pakistan is constantly playing mind games in Kashmir. They choose those people as their operatives who are least likely to be suspected. The offensive by ISI is not just in terms of militants. It is involving those local youth in the terror networks who are least likely to be suspected by the police or the security forces. One of the focal areas of ISI is maximizing its reach on information regarding Kashmir. They use financial support to lure girls from poor families. The ISI operatives tell the girls – you don’t have to kill. You only have to share information. They also work on luring the girls emotionally and by indoctrinating them, telling them that they are working for jihad. “If anything happens to you, you will be called a shaheed,” they tell the girls. Mostly poor girls get caught in the terror network because their family needs the money. For the movement of pistols in Kashmir which are delivered to hybrid militants, ISI prefers to give the task to some local girl. This is because girls are not suspected or doubted as much as boys. Their checking is also less as compared to the boys.
Militants, OGWs, ISI operatives – all know that Army men hesitate to stop the local girls for questioning. When the girls carry pistols or other weapons for delivery, the male OGWs provide them with cover. The purpose is that if any Army man stops a girl for questioning, these youths then raise a protest so that the girl can get away in time.
Many times, local girls who are co-opted into the terror network are deputed for movement with Pakistani militants or local militants. This is done so that the two are regarded as a couple. There is higher trust factor in the movement of a couple, as compared to the movement of men.
One of the strategies is that the girl who is moving with the Pakistani or local militant to give the appearance of a couple is told that she should have an ultra-modern look. This is done to divert the attention of the Army man who may stop the youth for questioning. Pakistani national Abu Dujana, an LeT commander in Kashmir, had a large network in Kashmir. Half his network was of girls. Burhan Wani also had a large network of girls. The girls are given money for the movement of weapons, for logistics. In the last few months, the police have been talking of hybrid militants. This is Pakistan’s new strategy. Boys who are engaged in regular activities as a salesman, mechanic, cook or any other profession are given pistols. Sometimes, they are asked to carry out an assassination.
At times girls in the OGW network are stationed around the spot where the assassination is to be carried out. After a militant or a hybrid militant carries out the attack, sometimes he hands over the pistol to a girl in the OGW network. Even if police and army search parties move in fast and start frisking those in the area, the girls are suspected less. They move away with the weapon. The male killer is able to escape conveniently because he does not have any weapon in his possession.
ANYBODY WHO WORKS FOR PEACE IS ON THE HIT LIST OF ISI
When the terror network suspects that some local youngster is helping the police or the Army, they direct some girl in their network to honeytrap him. Anybody who works for peace is on their hit list. It is their manifesto. The girl makes relations with the youngster. Then the youth starts confiding in her about his activities. He starts sharing his secrets with her. In this way, many youths who were working with the police or the Army revealed this to the girls. They were later brutally killed by the militants. Bohot saare ghar ke iklaute the par vo maar diye gaye. Female police force is there but they don’t check the girls like the way the checking of boys is conducted.
ISI INVOLVES THOSE WHO ARE LEAST LIKELY TO BE SUSPECTED
There is complete profiling to OGWs to examine that they are best suited to which task. The ISI operatives and the locals engaged in the terror network first identify the areas in which an OGW is likely to perform well, and then assign tasks accordingly. If a boy is good at handling computers, he will be given the same task. The terror network especially looks for people who are least likely to be suspected regarding their involvement. Some years ago, there was an OGW associated with Jaish. He was handicapped in both legs. Later the security forces came to know of his activities and arrested him. But the media raised a hue and cry that a man handicapped in both legs has been arrested for being a terror operator.
DOUBLE CROSSER OGWs
The terror networks deliberately encourage some people in their OGW network to cultivate good relations with the Police or with the Army. One such OGW was Mushtaq Bhat. In the 90s, he was so poor that he was counted among the lower class socially. He became a militant. He started extorting money from rich Kashmiris. He used to take an AK 47 and go to rich men and tell them – we need money for Islam. We need money for jihad. And he used to tell them – if you will tell anyone that I took money from you, you will be finished. In this way, he collected a lot of money. Then as was his plan, he surrendered to the forces. He took license as a local dealer for Airtel, for Jio, and as a distributor for Coca-Cola.
For about 15 years, the police or the Army did not come to know that Mushtaq Bhat was a double-crosser. He became a rich man. The Police and the Army thought that because he was a surrendered militant, he did not subscribe to the same ideology. They thought that they could trust him. Most surrendered militants were killed by other militants. But nobody killed Mushtaq Bhat because he was still part of the terror network. Us ka senior officers ke saath uthna baithna tha. And all this time, he kept funding local militant activities.
Wherever there was an event, people like Mushtaq Bhat are told to invite the local Police and Army officers in order to build good relations with them. They are told to give gifts to the Police and Army officers. Some officers take gifts. Some officers don’t take gifts. But goodwill bonds are formed. When Police or Army officers need to cross-check some information in their local network, they ask people like Mushtaq Bhat. But the officers don’t know where their query is reaching. The forces got to know of Mushtaq Bhat’s double-crossing in 2016. They came to know that he had provided the funds to the youth for agitations. He was arrested under the Public Safety Act. Now he is in Kupwara jail. OGWs are told to build relations with the officers in the Police or the Army. They are also told to join the BJP, the Police or the Army. That is why we have cases that some policeman or some Army soldier ran away with weapons.
This is an old tactic of ISI – that some OGWs should join the political parties in the Valley. In this way, some OGWs even got elected as MLAs. One of the most quoted examples is of Abdul Rashid Dar, who was an OGW for Hizbul. Jamaat e Islami and Hizbul propped up Dar to insulate them against state action. Dar joined the Congress and was elected twice as MLA. He has maintained strong relations with the top leadership of Hizbul Mujahideen in Pakistan for nearly 30 years now.
SHARING EXACT LATITUDE AND LONGITUDE COORDINATES
One of the tasks constantly given to youngsters who are involved by terror networks for information sharing is to send the latitude and longitude coordinates of any spot of strategic significance like an Army installation, fixed Army or police check posts etc. The location is sent through a short and specific effort on Google Maps. The latitude and longitude coordinates show up in the search bar at the top, which are specific to six decimal points. The latitude and longitude coordinates are not sent to Pakistan directly. They are sent through route links like Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Indonesia etc.
The digital information of the latitudes and longitudes is moved around according to a pre-decided code. They may be shifted to ABCD coding and used with emojis like flowers or stars. This is done so that when they are shared further with contacts in the terror network in India, nobody can understand that these are latitude and longitude coordinates for a specific strategic location.It is wise to prohibit the use of mobile phones around strategic installations, especially those of the Army or the Police. Many times vendors go up to strategic locations in Uri or in other border areas. Then they send the latitude and longitude coordinates for these locations. With these coordinates, Pakistan comes to know the exact location of the strategic installations and can attack accordingly. On the demand of the locals, internet services are provided in border areas. Perhaps the internet services are also needed by the police and the security forces. But the mobile networks also amount to a security breach.
HIGH MILITANCY GRAPH IN NORTH KASHMIR
Police think that south Kashmir is the militancy hotbed. Perhaps they do not know or perhaps they don’t want to reveal the high militancy graph in north Kashmir. In south Kashmir, a militant is likely to survive for two or three months only. Most local militants have a maximum life span of six months. But in north Kashmir, the influx of Pakistani militants is higher. They give more intensive training to the local militants on how to use weapons. The weapons used by militants in south Kashmir are all supplied from north Kashmir. The ammunition is supplied from Sopore, Rafiabad, Uri and such areas.
Whenever any attacks have taken place in north Kashmir, they have been deadly attacks. Sometimes it seems that they are like perfect crimes. Nobody knows who did it. The reason is that there are more Pakistani militants here. They are involved in the attack. They also give full personal training to the local youth here. The target practice and training in how to handle weapons is given to the youth deep in the forests. They use silencers so that nobody knows that shooting practice is going on. Theoretical training regarding how to store a pistol or a grenade, how to use them etc is given at home. This is one of the major motives of the ISI operatives here. That the local youth must continuously keep moving into militancy. They want to keep militancy in south Kashmir continually active. They don’t care whether a youth who becomes a militant is alive for two months, three months, six months. The resources, money, weapons for militancy – all these are supplied from north Kashmir. The bitter truth is that militants have higher support of people in north Kashmir than in south Kashmir. Here the support of the people is very high. If any Pakistani militants or local militants have to stay in any house, wahan un ki bohot khatirdari hoti hai.
One house gives them the contact for ten houses. In this way their stay for several months is ensured. This does not mean that support is there for Pakistan only. A good percentage of people support India. Most people who support India do not reveal this. They are targeted by the militants, hence they stay quiet out of fear. In the homes where the parents support Pakistan and parents support militancy, how can the child have an objective mind? He will grow up with the same toxic mindset. Then he or she will be ready material to become a stone pelter, an OGW, a militant.