The terror camp in Balakot in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan, which was targeted by the Indian Air Force (IAF) early on Tuesday, was an advanced training centre where suicide bombers were produced.
“Balakot was an important training center for the Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) and other terror organisations,” sources said.
“It had several structures to accommodate terrorist trainees and facilities to train them. It was used for battle inoculation,” sources stated.
Sources said, before the inception of JeM, the camp was also used by Hizb-ul-Mujahideen.
“Inspirational lectures were delivered by Masood Azhar (Jaish-e-Mohammed chief) and other terrorist leaders on several occasions,” sources said.
Situated on Kunhar river, the camp offered the possibility of aquatic training to terrorists also. The camp housed more than 200 terrorists. The trainers were ex-army personnel.
Sources said, the terrorists have imparted the advanced Daura e Khaas training in weapons, explosives and field tactics, tactics for attacking security forces convoys, planting and making IEDs, preparations for suicide bombing, rigging vehicles for suicide attacks and survival tactics in high altitudes and extreme-stress situations.
JeM specialises in fidayeen actions and gives immense importance to religious indoctrination and ideological brainwashing.
Masood Azhar’s relatives and cadres were trained at Balakot in advanced weapons and tactics, sources said.
The Indian Air Force, on Tuesday, carried out multiple aerial strikes at the terror camp, destroying control rooms of Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) and some other infrastructure.
JeM outfit had carried out terror attack on a CRPF convoy in Pulwama in Jammu and Kashmir on February 14 in which 40 security personnel were killed and five injured.
Pulwama terror attack had led to nationwide outrage and Prime Minister Narendra Modi had vowed to punish those behind the attack.