Thursday, September 21, 2017

Plan To Build Fighter Jets Hits A Hurdle

US-India Business Council reluctant to transfer technology

A recent letter by a U.S. business body to the Defence Ministry expressing its reluctance to transfer proprietary technologies could complicate India’s efforts to build a fighter jet locally with technology transfer from abroad. Both the competing aircraft have significant U.S. components.

This is a test for the ambitious new Strategic Partnership (SP) model for promoting domestic defence manufacturing under which multi-billion dollar deals are about to be initiated.

The letter was written early last month by the US-India Business Council (USIBC) to then Defence Minister Arun Jaitley in which the companies raised the issue of having control over proprietary technologies.

“Without real technology transfer, the whole idea of SP will fall apart. We will once again be doing assembling as has been happening for the last four decades,” one industry official said.

In the next couple of months, the Air Force is expected to initiate the process to select a single engine fighter jet under the SP model which will be built in India with significant technology transfer. The deal for over a 100 jets is estimated to cost over ₹60,000 crore by present projection, but the final order could end up at around 200 jets.

Twin Contenders

The contenders in the race are Lockheed Martin with its F-16 and Sweden’s SAAB with its Gripen. While the F-16 is a U.S. military platform, the Gripen is powered by engines built by General Electric of the US. In addition, the same engines have been selected to power the indigenously developed Tejas Light Combat Aircraft, 123 of which have been already ordered by the IAF.

While SAAB has assured full transfer of technology, it would still require U.S. government clearance for transferring specific components.

7 Pakistani Rangers Slain In Retaliatory Fire

SRINAGAR: A soldier was killed on Wednesday, after Pakistan reportedly fired on Indian Army posts along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir's Kupwara district, police said. There were also reports of seven Pakistan rangers being killed and many injured in the retaliation by BSF soldiers.

The soldier was killed in Keran sector.

Pakistani troops had earlier violated ceasefire on the international border in the Jammu district consecutively for four days. However, on Tuesday and Wednesday, the border had remained peaceful.

On Monday, Pakistan Rangers had resorted to heavy shelling across the border in Jammu and Kashmir for the fourth consecutive day, police said.

"They used 81-millimetre mortars, automatics and small weapons to target Indian positions in Arnia sub-sector. "Heavy exchanges which started late on Sunday, continued till 5 am on Monday. Border Security Force (BSF) troops retaliated effectively," police sources had said.

One civilian and a BSF trooper were killed. Six civilians were injured.

Schools in the areas have been closed and many families living in border villages have started migrating to safer places.

IDN TAKE: India Should Call Pakistani's Bluff

by Brigadier Arun Bajpai (Retd)

On Tuesday the 19 Sep 17, American president Donald trump while addressing the UN General Assembly came down heavily on Pakistan without naming it. He said that those countries who harbour terrorists to operate from their soil to attack neighbours, provide them shelter and finances must be exposed. He also said that America along with other friendly countries will crush these terrorists.

Before this masculine and hard hitting address, US President Trump in August, while unveiling his Afghan policy had directly warned Pakistan that it should not provide shelter to Haqqani network and Taliban operating against US troops in Afghanistan and Jaish-e-Mohammad and Lashkar-e-Toiba operating against India, in Kashmir .Trump had threatened Pakistan that if it does nothing against them, US will act against them on its own. This has unnerved Pakistan whose Foreign minister had gone running to China, Iran and Turkey to garner support against US. After this statement of American President, China had tried to convince US that Pakistan has done lot of sacrifices in its fight against terror and US must go soft on Pakistan. With this recent statement of US President Trump, it appears that he is not convinced.

Actually Pakistan has been fanaticising that after it has decided to join China camp, lock stock and barrel, china, Russia and Pakistan will form a block against US and Western powers like the good old days of Cold War and then US will be forced to be silent. What Pakistan forgets is that Pakistan is comparatively small regional country, while Chinas aims and objectives are global. China is not going to allow Pakistan to come in the way of its global vision. As for Russia, due to so many restrictions placed on it by the US & NATO powers, as a result of its taking over Crimea, as also the oil prices, the main product of Moscow, down, it is forced to be in China camp. How long it will remain there is anybody’s guess.

As retaliation to US, especially after a slap to Pakistan by the US President Trump, who has refused to meet Pakistani PM Abbasi on the side lines of the current UN Summit, Pakistan, has stopped all top level meets of the two countries bureaucrats. Pakistan has also come out for US with a policy which it calls, “Three options Tough Diplomatic policy”. In this policy one option is to deny US land route through Pakistan for supply of its troops operating in Afghanistan. Needless to say that it is typical Pakistani Bluff. Pakistan has to pay interest of 9 billion dollars on loans it has taken earlier. For this it has to rush to the American controlled IMF Bank. If Pakistan thinks that China will take on Pakistani debts then Pakistan is sadly mistaken. Pakistan is realising this in Chinese investment in Pakistan on its CPEC project of 50 billion dollars. Apart from engineers, workers, labour, even coal and cement China is bringing from China and not getting it locally.

India must grab this opportunity from both hands. India should not hesitate to offer to US use of its ports and Airports for supply of US troops. Way back when US had launched its war on terror that time also the Vajpayee Govt had offered these facilities to the US. India must isolate and expose Pakistan at all levels. We should never forget that Pakistan read Pakistani Army will never allow friendly relations with India.

Brig Arun Bajpai (Retd) is a distinguished Defence and Strategic Analyst. Views expressed are of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of IDN. IDN does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same

Here Is All That You Need To Know About SAAB-Adani Group's Defence Deal

Aircraft acquisition program are essentially a function of need but political consideration buttressing Indian industry and ‘Make In India’ program are important considerations

On 1 September, Swedish defence and security major SAAB and Adani Group announced plans to make SAAB’s single engine fighter aircraft Gripen and other high-tech products of national importance for India. The two groups will also create joint ventures in India in line with government’s ‘Make In India’ policy in defence.

Similarly, on 19 June, US-based Lockheed Martin and TATA Advanced Systems (TASL) signed an agreement expressing their intent to join hands to produce the F-16 Block 70 in India. Both the collaborations are to participate in the Indian Air Force’s (IAF) single-engine fighter program, which is expected to be out soon under the recently announced strategic partnership model.

These two aircraft are back competing each other after a hiatus of six years when they were participant in, now scrapped, Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA) program of the IAF for procurement of 126 medium weight fighter jets, which was won by the French Rafale.

The Gripen and F-16 were among the six jets in the running for an IAF tender floated in 2007. Eighteen of these aircraft were to be procured directly from the vendor and rest were to be manufactured under licence in India by HAL, Bangalore, with an offset clause of 50 per cent. The request for proposal was sent out in 2007 and was responded by six companies and the French Rafale emerged the lowest bidder. After the failure of negotiation between government and the vendor, the tender was eventually scrapped. But due to operational necessity, the IAF opted for an off-the-shelf purchase of 36 Rafales for over Rs 55,000 crore.

Single engine program basically brings the MMRCA back in the business but with this time only for single-engine fighters. Out of the six contenders of MMRCA, two single engine jets were considered the weakest because of their comparative size, but ironically, they have made a comeback through the IAF single engine fighter requirement.

What’s New This Time?

The IAF has around 30 operational fighter squadron comprising Russian MiGs-21, 27 and 29, French Mirage-2000, British-French Jaguar, Su-30MKI and LCA Tejas. Indian fleet had aircraft specialised for specific roles, but after the induction of Mirage 2000, a true multi-role aircraft, the IAF realised that by replacing specialised aircraft with multi-role fighters, it will increase its efficiency and operational flexibility with much reduced operational and logistic burden.

The MMRCA deal was supposed to replace ageing and accident prone Soviet origin MiG-21s and MiG 27s.

The IAF had envisaged a fighter aircraft fleet with three different categories of fighter aircraft – heavy fighters, medium fighters and light fighters. The Russian Su-30MKI was chosen as heavy fighter and, till date, the IAF has 230 of these birds out of the order of 272 aircraft. In the medium segment (MMRCA), India floated a global tender to select aircraft through for 126 aircraft. India has Rafale in this segment. In the light fighter category, the IAF is inducting indigenously developed light combat aircraft Tejas Mk1. Till date, India has ordered for 123 aircraft from defence public sector undertaking HAL. But even after 10 years of floating MMRCA tender, India has come back to the starting point. If it was not for the Su-30s, the IAF would have lost its operational superiority to its adversaries. The IAF is also planning to induct fifth generation stealth fighter from Russia, which will be co-produced by both nations.

Now, the IAF is expected to decommission around 10 squadrons (16-18 aircraft each) of Russian jets. To maintain the numbers, the IAF needs to induct around 200 aircraft in the next 10 years. Ironically, MMRCA, called the mother of all deals, was estimated to cost exchequers Rs 55,000 crore but India ended up paying the same amount in 2016 for just 36 aircraft. Irony continues as two of the lightest fighters are back with proposals to manufacture in India!

The story of MMRCA is the saga of everything that is wrong with Indian procurement system. India wished for dream deals where we would get weapons system, technology, offset and assembly line at a competitive price. But the inability to take timely decisions and bureaucratic red tapism ended up converting the opportunity into a liability.

Speaking on the fighter acquisition problems Air Marshal Vinod Patney (Retd), Director General, Centre for Air Power Studies, says, “Aircraft acquisition program are essentially a function of need but political consideration buttressing Indian industry and ‘Make In India’ program are important considerations. Sometimes the best is the enemy of the good.” Deba Mohanty, Director, Indike Analytics, opines that “acquisition of both MMRCA type and single-engine fighters typify the IAF’s indecision or bad planning.”

To overcome the shortage of combat jets, the IAF, in October 2016, sent out a one-page letter to manufacturers in Sweden, the US and Russia through Indian embassies scouting for single-engine fighters to replace its ageing fleet. The letter was responded by SAAB and Lockheed Martin offering their single jet fighters.

Answering why India is interested in single-engine aircraft but not more Rafales, Patney said, “We needed Rafale class of aircraft. The cost of the capabilities makes it expensive, hence, we are seeking aircraft of high enough capability but somewhat less expensive.”

But this time too, if India fails to reach an agreement at the right time, the repercussions will be immense. No amount of money will be able to resurrect the IAF at a time when the fifth generation fighters are almost ready to be inducted by a next-door adversary.

Coast Guard Adds Two Fast Interceptor Boats

IG K.R. Nautiyal, Commander Coast Guard Region (West) commissioning the interceptor boats Agardanda on Tuesday

The boats will be stationed at Murud-Janjira. officers said

Murud: In a bid to tighten coastal security and increase vigil, the Indian Coast Guard on Tuesday commissioned two interceptor boats at Agardanda near Murud-Janjira.

The ICGS C-433 and C-434 will be the first interceptor boats to join the Coast Guard along the Murud-Janjira coast. Their commissioning comes two months prior to the seventh anniversary of the 2008 26/11 terror attacks, when terrorists had entered the city through the sea route.

Inspector General K.R. Nautiyal, Commander Coast Guard Region (West) said, “The area is extremely sensitive to us considering its proximity to important ports and, of course, Mumbai. The vessels have speed and excellent navigation equipment on board, and will be important tools in patrolling the coast, search-and-rescue operations and to check smuggling.”

The interceptor boats will be based at Murud-Janjira under the Administrative and Operational control of the Station Commander, ICGS Murud-Janjira. They will be commanded by Deputy Commandants Jasprit Singh Dhillon and Jahid Arfan respectively. Both boats will have a crew of 12 Enrolled Personnel each.

India’s Big Diplomacy Push In Middle East! Indian Submarine, Warships & Reconnaissance Aircraft On Deployment

In this photo is a Long Range Maritime Reconnaissance Aircraft of the Western Naval Command

Giving a big diplomatic push to ties with Middle Eastern countries, Indian Navy's warships, submarine and reconnaissance aircraft are on deployment to Western Arabian Sea and Southern Indian Ocean. Indian Naval Ship Mumbai and submarine Shishumar entered Duqm, Oman today as part of this deployment. India and Oman bilateral relations were formally established with the 1953 Indo-Oman Treaty of Friendship, Navigation and Commerce. This is a first treaty between India and any Arab country. 

Take a look at some stunning images of the submarine, warships & reconnaissance aircraft on deployment:

The Western Naval Command, which exercises operational control of the naval units in this theatre, has been actively involved in enhancing three-dimensional surveillance efforts.

Submarine Shishumar entered Duqm, Oman as part of this deployment to the Western Arabian Sea, after conducting a series of exercises enroute.

Indian Naval Ship Mumbai entered Duqm, Oman as part of this deployment to the Western Arabian Sea.

In this photo is a submarine Shishumar. An Indian naval submarine is visiting a foreign port after a long gap. In this photo is a submarine Shishumar. The Naval units are on a month long deployment with the aim of enhancing surveillance.

Our Bureau

Snowden Document Leak: What Are Sagarika And Dhanush Missiles? Why Are They Important For India’s Nuclear Triad?

K-15 "Sagarika or Oceanic" missile undergoing underwater pontoon launch

What Are The Features of Sagarika And Dhanush Missiles

New Delhi: A website has claimed that among Edward Snowden’s leaked documents were some papers pertaining to United States’ espionage on India’s military installations. The documents say that US secret agency NSA had known that India was developing two types of ballistic missiles namely– Sagarika and Dhanush.


Sagarika is a nuclear-capable missile that can be launched from nuclear-powered submarines. They have a range of 750 kilometres. Its development was done by Indian scientists and the project was code named Project 420. It was completed in 2001 and was given to the Navy for testing. The missile tests were successful in 2008. It was tested to its full range several times and it struck its targets with accuracy. Now, it has entered production.


Dhanush is a variant of the surface-to-surface or ship-to-ship Prithvi-3 missile. It has been developed by the Indian Navy. Its range varies with the amount of payload mounted on it. It can carry convention and nuclear warheads as well. The missile can be used to destroy both land targets and ships.

Nuclear Triad

Nuclear triad means the capability to launch nuclear weapons from land, sea, and air. In case of a nuclear attack, the land and air modes of a retaliatory nuclear strike may be incapacitated. In that case, the only means remain is a strike from the sea. Since it is impossible to destroy all the submarines, they are the most important part of any country’s nuclear triad.

US Knew About India's Secret Missile Programs in 2005, Claims Documents Leaked By Snowden

Nuclear-capable Dhanush missile successfully test-fired from INS Subhadra Patrol Vessel

From Edward Snowden trove: US had data on Indian nuclear missiles in 2005

The January 2005 document published by The Intercept, an American news website, suggests that America’s National Security Agency (NSA) also obtained “significant intelligence” about other bombs India possessed at the time

The US may have gained information regarding India’s nuclear-capable Sagarika and Dhanush missiles and the facility where they were being developed as early as in 2005, according to a document from American whistleblower Edward Snowden’s trove. The January 2005 document published by The Intercept, an American news website, suggests that America’s National Security Agency (NSA) also obtained “significant intelligence” about other bombs India possessed at the time.

The document is part of 294 articles published by The Intercept on September 14. These articles are purportedly from the internal news website, SIDtoday, of the NSA’s core Signal Intelligence Directorate, The Intercept reported.

They are part of the trove of documents provided by Snowden, who was a contractor with the NSA till 2013, when he flew from the US to Hong Kong and handed over the data to a group of journalists, leading to one of the largest leaks of sensitive American intelligence data.

Titled “New collection access yields ‘spectacular’ intel”, the document states that in October 2004, an NSA site in Australia, named RAINFALL, “had successfully geolocated signals of a suspected Indian nuclear weapons storage facility.” After this, a “Foreign Satellite collection facility” named LEMONWOOD — based in Thailand according to The Intercept — and the Unidentified Signal and Protocol Analysis Branch at NSA “collaborated in isolating these signals” to confirm whether it was related to Indian nuclear weapons.

This led to addition of equipment being deployed at LEMONWOOD to “expand the modest collection”, the report claims. RAINFALL also collaborated with another NSA site in Thailand named INDRA, according to The Intercept.

“Immediately after fielding this equipment, collection of this new network began to provide what is being called ‘spectacular’ activity.” The “exploitation” of this collection, the article claims, revealed information about Sagarika, Dhanush and a pilotless target aircraft projects. Some of the information about this intelligence is redacted in the document published by The Intercept to mask identities. Sagarika, a Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile (SLBM), and Dhanush, a sea-launched Short-Range Ballistic Missile (SRBM), are part of India’s nuclear triad, making it capable of striking nuclear weapons from the sea.

Sagarika, which has a range of more than 700 km, had been under development since the 1990s and successfully test-fired in 2008, three years after the US NSA had sensitive information about it. It can be launched underwater and fired from the ground, and can carry a payload of 500 kg.

Dhanush was successfully test-fired last year, more than 11 years after the Americans had intelligence about it, and has a range of 350 km and can carry a payload of 500 kg. The purported SID today article also claims that the collection from the new access “has also provided significant intelligence on India’s possession of two different types of airdropped bombs”. One of these bombs, according to the report, was believed to be a “very large Fuel Air Explosive” bomb of an unidentified type. American intelligence agencies believed the other bomb may have been a “new generation of air dropped nuclear weapons”.

After the NSA gained this information, the report says, more resources were deployed to expand the collection “against this high-priority network”.

Another document from March 2005 suggests that Pakistan was a partner of NSA at that point and was a “key in our success in the global war on terrorism”. There is no document that suggests that the intelligence gained on Indian nuclear programme was shared with Pakistan by NSA.

Lt General D S Hooda: Was Wary of Pakistan Retaliation After Surgical Strike

Can we do another surgical strike? Yes. Glass ceiling has been broken: Lt Gen DS Hooda (Retd)

Calling the successful operation a shattering of the glass ceiling, Lt Gen Hooda said the Army can do another successful surgical strike

Breaking his silence on the surgical strikes by the Special Forces on terror launch pads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) a year ago, Lt General (Retd) D S Hooda, who planned and oversaw the strikes, has told The Indian Express that the operation was “very complex with multiple targets to be struck on the same night, each with a unique profile”.

Lt Gen Hooda, who was then the Northern Army Commander, said “what happened was that we went across the Line of Control at multiple places in Pakistan’s 10 Corps (area) and caught them by total surprise”. He said “the operation was a complete success” and he “would not touch any part of the plan and do it differently”.

“We had to kill terrorists, but hundred terrorists killed and one soldier left behind would have been a failure,” he said.

“The crucial part about the operation was not about the number of terrorists killed but the safe return of all our soldiers. The operation was very complex with multiple targets to be struck on the same night, each with a unique profile. The difference in time between striking the first and last target was in hours,” he said. “Daybreak had already broken by the time the last of our soldiers were back.”

Accepting that the night of the operation — September 28-29, 2016 — “was definitely sleepless”, he said “it was such an uplifting feeling when reports started coming in about different groups safely returning across the Line of Control”.

He said the Army was “wary of retaliation” from Pakistan after the surgical strikes “but the moment Pakistan refused to acknowledge the strike, we knew we had won the moral battle”.

Calling the successful operation a shattering of the glass ceiling, Lt Gen Hooda said the Army can do another successful surgical strike as “Special Forces have gained tremendous confidence in their ability to execute a complex operation in very hostile territory”.

Cellphone Bomb Found Hidden In Passenger Luggage By X-Ray Machine At Airport

An IndiGo flight from Mangalore to Dubai was delayed on Tuesday following a major security scare when a suspicious "clay-like" item was detected by airport scanners

A cellphone 'bomb' has been discovered hidden inside a mobile phone by staff screening baggage in an X-ray machine at Mangalore Airport in India.

An IndiGo flight from Mangalore to Dubai was delayed this afternoon when a suspicious "clay-like" item was detected by airport scanners.

The discovery sparked a major security scare as Indian media reported a 26-year-old man travelling to Dubai had been arrested after police were called.

Early reports suggested there was confusion as to whether the device was viable or fake. Sniffer dogs reportedly gave a "mixed signal" if the item was explosive or whether it contained a chemical used to launch a possible gas attack.

Indian media reported a "suspicious clay-like object" was found in the Dubai-bound passenger's mobile phone which was located in his check-in baggage.

The X-ray machine detected the bomb hidden in a mobile phone

But later it was identified as a disguise for a hand-made power pack.

Mangaluru Police Commissioner TS Suresh said: "It was a self-made power bank and after through check it was allowed to proceed," according to Times Now News.

A photograph shows red and yellow electrical wires attached to a small silver object similar to a battery pack with a brown-coloured material keeping items in place.

One theory to emerge is that this was a 'dry run' by a 'terrorist sales rep' or arms dealer who was attempting to show customers how 'easy' it was to get the device onto a plane through security - but failed.

Airline IndiGo tweeted: "IndiGo's alert security screener staff at Mangalore caught a suspect carrying alleged cellphone bomb today.

"The matter has been reported to the local police. Since it is a sensitive security matter we have nothing more to share."

India's Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) chief Rajesh Kumar Chandra reportedly ordered the object to be investigated.

The Times of India quoted a senior aviation official who said: "The passenger, M Mohammed, was booked on IndiGo's flight 6E 877 from Mangalore to Bangalore at 10pm on Tuesday and then he was to travel from Bangalore to Dubai on IndiGo flight 6E 95 Wednesday at 7.20am.

"While screening his checked in baggage at Mangalore, the screener noticed that a power bank was in his bag which looked suspicious (as it showed a green coloured thick image).

"(The screener) did a physical check and opened the power bank to check and noticed a clay like substance in the power bank."

Times Now News reported the device was later identified as a "fake improvised explosive device".

IndiGo is a low-cost carrier which is the largest in India in terms of passenger numbers.

The airline flies to 46 domestic and international destinations and its main base is at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi.

Mangalore airport operates dozens of flights to domestic and major Middle Eastern cities every day with Doha, Dubai, Kuwait and Bahrain among its most popular routes.

Mangalore Airport is one of two international hubs in the Indian state of Karnataka.

It opened on Christmas Day in 1951 and was granted international status in October 2012 - six years after the first overseas flights to Dubai.

In January last year, it was announced the Airports Authority of India had provided 17,000 sq ft of space at an old terminal building to the Indian Coast Guard as headquarters for its air operations.

The Foreign Office warns of terror plots in India especially public places "visited by foreigners".

It reads: "Terrorists are very likely to try to carry out attacks in India.

"Recent attacks have targeted public places including those visited by foreigners.

"There have been recent media reports suggesting Daesh (formerly referred to as ISIL) interest in attacking targets in India.

"There may be an increased threat to places visited by British nationals such as religious sites, markets, festival venues and beaches."

Will Iqbal Kaskar Lead To Dawood Ibrahim? Unlocking D-Company Mystery

Iqbal Kaskar (left) may have been in contact with Dawood Ibrahim, say reports

From Mumbai to Dubai to Karachi, what's the story behind Mumbai underworld? Is Iqbal Kaskar's arrest an ultimatum to Dawood Ibrahim? Read to find out

by Surabhi Pandey

In what could be the biggest catch for India, ex-encounter specialist Pradeep Sharma and his team detained Iqbal Ibrahim Kaskar, the younger brother of India's most wanted criminal — Dawood Ibrahim Kaskar.

On the surface, it looks like a simple case of a Mumbai underworld criminal involved in an extortion racket targeting realtors and businessmen.

But why would the police arrest Iqbal Kaskar is an old extortion case now?

The answer lies in a special strategy adopted by India, reportedly formulated by National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, which is targeted to corner Dawood.

Iqbal Kaskar is a very strong link that can help New Delhi to unmask the D-Company syndicate.

The younger brother of Dawood Ibrahim, number 5 among 11 siblings, is relatively less fierce than other Kaskar brothers.

An HT report quotes a police official, who said that Kaskar was a 'softy' in the D Company who ran extortion racket solely on 'merit' of his surname.

Iqbal Kaskar never went with Dawood and other brothers Anees and Noora to Pakistan.

He migrated to Dubai in late 80s, where he used to sell electronic items in shops given to him by Dawood.

After 9/11 attacks, when the security forces came down on the D Company, Iqbal Kaskar was deported to India in 2003. He was booked in two case but was released on bail in 2007. The police said that he was running the extortion racket from the home of his sister Haseena Parker after her death in 2014.

As the latest reports suggest that Iqbal Kaskar was in touch with his brother Anees Ibrahim, the police may be able to prove the link between Kaskar and his brothers in Pakistan.

Amid all this, another important link in the D-Company mystery is Chota Rajan.

Once a great friend and partner, Chota Rajan is now an arch enemy of Dawood Ibrahim.

Arrested in Indonesia in 2015, Chota Rajan may be helping Indian security agencies with such specific intel.

He is providing much insight to the police to nab the second most richest gangster in the world after Pablo Escobar, an HT report said.

With arrest of Iqbal Kaskar, Dawood Ibrahim must be having sleepless nights in his plush home in Karachi.

BJP Accuses Omar of Being ‘Fundamentalist’ Over His Rohingya Remarks

Omar Abdullah had questioned those calling on the Rohingya to leave the country, asking whether they would also demand the Tibetan government-in-exile to leave the country.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday hit out at former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah for his comments on the Centre recent stand on the Rohingya refugees before the Supreme Court.

The Centre had recently submitted before the SC that it considers Rohingyas to be a threat to national security. Reacting to this, Omar wrote on Twitter that this stand on the Centre is post-2014 phenomenon and that the argument was never forwarded during security meeting prior to 2014.

On Wednesday, BJP state spokesperson Virender Gupta in a statement said even though Omar Abdullah is a member of a major political party of J&K and is a former chief minister, he “matches the separatists in his statements and gives the impression of being a fundamentalist in his approach”. 

He was also reacting to Omar’s recent statement wherein he asked if the Dalai Lama be asked to leave the country and Tamil refugee sent back.

“During the Amarnath land row, Omar and his party opposed construction of temporary shelters for pilgrims, In the parliament Omar announced that not an inch of the land can be given for this,” he claimed.

Hizbul Mujahideen Terrorist Aadil Ahmad Bhat Arrested In Jammu And Kashmir's Anantnag District

Jammu and Kashmir police arrested Hizbul Mujahideen militant Aadil Ahmad Bhat from Bijbehara railway station in Anantnag district on Wednesday morning in a joint operation with CRPF and the Indian Army.

Bhat has a booty of three lakh on his head, wrote, adding that the Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist was going back to his place after meeting his accomplice when he was arrested by the joint team of army and Jammu and Kashmir Police.

Bhat was wanted in several cases of attacks on security forces and local panchayat officials, the website further reported.

This month security forces have received considerable success in arresting and killing terrorists in the state.

Bhat’s arrest comes six days after the killing of Lashkar-e-Taiba leader Abu Ismail and his associate in an encounter with security forces in Nowgam in Anantnag, reported Hindustan Times.

Ismail, who is considered to be responsible for the killings of eight Amarnath Yatra pilgrims on 10 July, was an A-plus category terrorist.

Also, on 10 September, a day before home minister Rajnath Singh’s visit to the state, two local militants were gunned down by security forces in Shopian district. A third militant surrendered to the forces as the firefight ended next day, reported Deccan Chronicle.

On the same day, Shahid Ahmed Sheikh alias Shabir, Hizbul Mujahideen’s district commander for Baramulla, was killed in Reban area outside the northwestern town of Sopore, the daily had reported.

Will You Ask Tibetan Govt-In-Exile To Leave: Omar Abdullah On Rohingya Muslims

Srinagar: National Conference leader Omar Abdullah on Tuesday questioned those calling on the Rohingya Muslims to leave the country, asking whether they would also demand the Tibetan government-in-exile to leave the Indian shores.

"So are those plugging their India for Indians line going to demand that the Tibetan government in exile leave Indian shores immediately (sic)?" he wrote on Twitter.

The Leader of Opposition in the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly was referring to the demands for deportation of the Rohingya Muslims, especially in the wake of the Centre's affidavit in the Supreme Court saying that they were "illegal" immigrants and their continous stay posed "serious national security ramifications".

"His holiness the Dalai Lama is going to find himself unwelcome in his adopted home unless of course this xenophobia is selective," Abdullah wrote on the microblogging website.

"And while they are at it will Tamil refugees from Sri Lanka be sent back as punishment for (former Prime Minister) Rajiv Gandhi's assassination (sic)," he said in another tweet. Abdullah had yesterday said there was no intelligence input till 2014 that the Rohingya Muslims staying in Jammu and Kashmir posed a security threat.

"This threat, at least in J&K, is a post 2014 development. No such intelligence reports ever came up for discussion in Unified HQ meetings (sic)," he had tweeted. Abdullah was the chief minister of the state till 2014.

Sushma, Other SAARC Ministers To Meet In NY

Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj and her South Asian counterparts will discuss ways to end the impasse over the SAARC summit during a meeting in New York this week.

Sushma and foreign ministers of seven other member nations of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) are likely to meet on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York this week, sources told the DH.

This is the first time the SAARC foreign ministers will meet after the bloc’s 19th summit — scheduled to be held in Islamabad on November 9 and 10 last year — was postponed after New Delhi decided to opt out, protesting against export of cross-border terrorism from the territory under control of Pakistan. This is also the first time when Sushma and the new Pakistani Foreign Minister Khwaja Asif will together attend a multilateral meet.

The SAARC foreign ministers are likely to assess the regional situation to find out if the situation was conducive to hold the summit now. Sushma is likely to point out that Islamabad had done nothing in the past few months to bring to justice the terror operatives, who had planned and remotely coordinated the attacks on Mumbai in November, 2008, on Indian Air Force base at Pathankot in Punjab in January 2016 and on Indian Army camp at Uri in northern Kashmir in September 2016, sources in New Delhi said.