Srinagar: In one of the biggest catches in recent months, a top Hizbul Mujahideen militant Tariq Pandit, a close aide of the terror group’s poster boy Burhan Wani, was arrested on Saturday after he surrendered to police in Pulwama. Considered as a category A militant, Pandit figured prominently with Burhan in various pictures and videos that were posted by the terror group last year. Pandit carried a cash reward of Rs 3 lakh for information leading to his arrest.
There were conflicting reports as senior police officials of Pulwama district in South Kashmir said that Pandit had surrendered but the army maintained that he had been apprehended. A senior police official said that he was put under arrest after he surrendered to the army unit in Pulwama. A defence spokesman issued a statement saying that a “major blow” had been dealt to the banned Hizbul Mujahideen with the arrest of Pandit in a “well coordinated swift operation” on Saturday on Newa-Pinglana road in the district.
He said based on specific intelligence input regarding the movement of a Hizb militant near Karimabad, a joint mobile vehicle check post was established by Army and police in the morning hours. “The movement of the terrorist was kept under constant surveillance. As the terrorist closed in, he was apprehended by the team of Rashtriya Rifle battalion, along with one 9 mm pistol and two Chinese grenades were recovered from him,” the spokesman said. He said the militant was involved in many terror-related incidents in the district.
Who was he?
Tariq Pandit was a close aide of the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen’s poster boy Burhan Wani.
He figured prominently with Burhan in various pictures and videos that were posted by the terror group last year. Pandit carried a cash reward of Rs 3 lakh