Nestled in God’s lap, and endowed with mesmerizing and enchanting beauty, the valley of Kashmir is a reflection of what the wise men attribute as “God’s special effort in carving out an irresistible charm, bedecking the glory of this world.” For centuries, the landscape of Kashmir has romanticized and frolicked poets and naturalists’ who could only rave about its peerless panorama. Kashmir acts as the crown, adding to the sheen of its wearer, India. However, as grey shades and insidious eyes always prey upon the downfall of one’s success, India’s sinister neighbour, Pakistan casted an evil eye on the crown and decided to deprive India of this crown by making Kashmir, the ugliest in the world—literary and figuratively.
Pak Army Hatched Criminal Conspiracy
As the Deep State in Pakistan is the ubiquitous force, looting the cream of country’s resources and revenues, the Pak army led by its “cash-cow” ISI hatched a criminal conspiracy to fit in the scheme of Zia’s lines:“Bleed India with thousand cuts.” This intransigence driven by Hindu hatred led to the creation of the spectre of terrorism, which, however, was the desperation to seek revenge for liberation of Bangladesh by Indian forces in 1971. Truth be told, the onset of militancy in Kashmir in 1989 was a “saving grace tactic” employed by Pakistan army to blunt the threat of terrorists— who fought for it in Afghanistan—by diverting their expertise to bleed India via Kashmir— resulting in onset of militancy in the valley, the same year. This coincided with the creation of dreaded terrorist group, Lashkar-e-Taiba in Yunar province of Afghanistan in late 1980s.
Influx of Pak Based Terrorists
However, to give a tone of localization of the sentiments and to create an impression of the freedom struggle being indigenous, Pak army recruited the locals and provided them the requisite arms training. The subsequent mayhem it wrought ruined thousands of families by snatching their “apple of the eyes.” However, the reign of terror was dealt a major blow by Indian security forces’ as more than 8 thousand terrorists, mostly locals were eliminated. Feeling its Apple-cart being toppled, Pak espionage focused on home-grown terrorists, and began to export them to Kashmir in 1994. The then Hurriyat leader, Abdul Ghani Lone, fiercely opposed the foray of Lashkar-e-Taiba in Kashmir but his sanity was unheeded. His premonition was prophetic indeed as Lashkar-e-Taiba ruthlessly killed many innocent Kashmiris’ on the suspicious grounds of being collaborators. Subsequently, the creation of Jaish-e-Mohammed rubbed salt into the wounds of Kashmiris’ and aggravated the challenge for security forces despite former CM of J&K, Dr Farooq Abdullah, warning against releasing Masood Azhar in 1999.
Unveiled Chronicles of Lashkar Terrorist Zabiullah aka Abu Hamza
With this historical synopsis, let’s now broach the important subject of how and why an innocent soul is indoctrinated into the terrorism fold by the factory of Jihad created by the espionage in Pakistan? Initially, Kashmiris’ were made to believe the separation of their homeland from India is a “low-hanging fruit” –which attracted many local youth into terrorist ranks, leading to utter devastation of their families. Pak army is actually the Hydra—the reincarnation of Greek leech, Medusa, feeding its lust with innocent blood of Kashmiris’ and its own people.
Zabiullah- Product of Pakistan Jehad Factory
As a case study here, let’s analyze here how the battery of Jihad in Pakistan weaponises and employs religious sentiments to carry with its agenda. Take this case of indoctrination of a PaK trained Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorist, apprehended by Indian security forces on 06 April in 2018 from village Jugtiyal of North Kashmir’s Kupwara district. Zabiullah aka Abu Hamza, is a curious case of home driven indoctrination—eventually landing him in an Indian jail. Hailing from Gali No 1, Mehmood Kot, Mehmood, Sharifpora, Multan, Pakistan, Abu Hamza, in his interrogation revealed the quest for Jihad was a childhood fantasy as his father transmitted the lust of extremism in his veins right from his toddling days. Being a trained Jihadi himself, Hamza’s father had eight sons- Zabibullah, Samiullah, Saifullah, Shoibh, Khubaib, Ali, Abdullah, Ahmad and three daughters -Aasia, Ayehsar and Khatiza. But only weaned away him (Hamza) from worldly pleasures by confining him to the “devastation” he finally succumbed to. Since Hamza’s father was not allowed by the family to join Lashkar-e-Taiba, he passed on the baton of failure to Hamza, fulfilling the desire he had nurtured in a terrorist camp in Pakistan. Upon being apprehended in Kashmir, Hamza was properly studied by security agencies who work in coordination and tandem to root out extremism from Kashmir.
Abu Hamza comes from a lower middle-class family; his father Sonaullah an employee at Income Tax Department and had also undergone terrorist training at Muzaffarabad but not allowed by family to join Lashkar. His mother’s name is Nazia and she is a housewife.
To make sure Hamza is not distracted by worldly pleasures, his father fed him all the incriminating material, and indoctrinated him from his childhood days. He was detached from worldly literature and relegated to noxious content of propaganda magazines like Jarar-e-Kashmir and videos, purportedly showing excesses of Indian security forces in the valley. So, we can easily say the home environment of Abu Hamza was ripe in his transfiguration of a religious fanatic and prodigious Jihaadi. As expected, Hamza gave up his schooling, dropping-out from class VII ( from Shareef school in Multan) and went straight to the place his father had raised him for—an Islamic seminary, that too at the gullible age of 12 in 2012. Another factor luring him to the extremism was killing of one of Hamza’s friend, Abdul Wahad by security forces in Kashmir.
His father ensured that he remain isolated from reality, he was not given access to TV or magazines. His only source of entertainment was Jihadi Taranas. On Laptop, which he had access was only used to watch doctored Jehadi videos
Already having been acclimatized for the Madrassa environment as a toddler, Abu Hamza spent 4 years in the seminary—at Sharipur Multan—before moving out in 2016. After brushing up his religious education, Hamza joined the LeT ranks at Manshera, Muzaffarabad in the same year—and began to receive the arms training, imparted in phases by LeT. As Pak author Arif Jamal has already informed through his extensive writings on LeT, Abu Hamza successfully completed all the basic courses of Daura-e-Aam, Daura-e-Khaas, and the specialized training of Daura-e-Lashkar.
Daura-e-Aam is the basic screening phase where the potential terror recruits are identified. It is to filter the more radical and physically fit participants. Abu Hamza attended the same at the age of 16 years and was able to impress his masters. There were 400 others like him of adolescence age to late thirties.He received this training at Mansera Camp located in Muzaffarabad.
Daura-e-Khaas is the second phase of training imparted by LeT to their potential recruits. Abu Hamza attended this phase of training at Dakkan Camp, Muzaffarabad with thirty other motivated youths like him. During the span of training i.e. for five months recruits are trained in Field Craft, Weapon training, Navigation, Endurance and Survival Skills.
The third phase of training Daura-e-Lashkar also known as Barfani training is only imparted to highly motivated youths who have done exceedingly well during second phase i.e. Daura-e-Khaas. Abu Hamza was again selected for this phase with 22 others recruits. The terrorists in making were trained for one month mainly in mountain warfare, survival in snow, navigation and carrying out fidayeen/ IED attack.
Armed to the teeth and trained properly for survival in rugged terrains, Hamza set out for Kashmir with five other terrorists, reaching the launch pad located at Dudhnial in the month of March/April 2017. His other accomplices were Waqas @ Dardah, 25 years old from Sargodha – He was the senior most and commander of infiltration group, Abu Shurain, 26 years old from Bhawalpur, Abu Umar, 19 years from Thar Parkar, Sindh, AbuFahdullah, 19 years old from Gujranwala, QariSoob, 18 years from Deer. Subsequently, Hamza revealed that he and his accomplices left the launchpad on 01-02 March 2018, following which they were told to sneak into this side of Kashmir by chancing upon the darkness of the night. They were equipped with one AK rifle, five filled magazines, three grenades, UBGL four rounds, one radio set, YSMS and GPS per terrorists. two UBGLS, and two pistols were also carried in a group. They were also provided with huge amount of cash. They were personally briefed by Kasim Bhai, son of Lashkar senior operative ZakrurRehaman. It was not an easy journey as the “all-pervading eye” of Army and the vulnerabilities of jungle were monitoring their pranced steps in the forest belt.
The six member in fit group was accompanied by total five guides till the fence. They tactically moved for three nights and reached fence near Pak Sarbal Post amidst heavy snow and fog. After making seven failed attempts earlier this time they were successful. The group was tasked to reach Lolab, establish contacts and administrative support base as the number of terrorists had gone down.
The subsequent adventures were filled with more dangers as the group was heavily reliant on the local logistical support—as narrated by Hamza in the interrogation, which he added also involved a short sojourn in Lolab belt. The group meandered through the forest area, pandering after the hope of not being neutralized before what Hamza said “a daring attack he had come for.”
The route adopted was Lashkar facility KFC at Muzaffarabad – Dudhnial- Tejian -Sarbal -Badi Bheak- NawanGali -Turshanbala (jugtiyal Forest and Halmatpora) It was snowing heavily when they breached fence. Group moved tactically for nine days through jungles with help of GPS and customised application Alpine Quest with pre fed coordinates. They moved during night and rested during day. The group had exhausted all their ration within first eight days and carried on without any food for next two days. Also two members of the group sustained cold injuries in foot. The group was traced on March 20 by security forces on receiving inputs from locals. All others were eliminated except Hamza who managed to escape. Till night of April 05 he took shelter in jungles of Halmatpur before being tracked by Army.
Pakistan Toying with Kashmirs’ Sentiments
This Hamzian anecdote tells how much effort and money is invested by ISI and its pawns like Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad or HM to keep what it calls the genuine aspirations of Kashmir and support to their just cause of freedom afloat. Since 1947, Pak has fought four wars over Kashmir and lost all of them before the might of India. As Pak army is the de facto and de jure head in the country living a comfortable life at the cost of Pakistanis’ sufferings, youth like Hamza become the fodder of the ideology Pak army has successfully constructed and sold to Pak people.
“Pak army is your defender against Islam’s and Pak’s greatest enemy, India”’ is the narrative Pak army has sold while justifying the billions it loots every year in the form of massive hike in defense budget and foreign aid. One can often read or see, Pakistan PM, Imran Khan impressing on the global multi-lateral agencies for financial bail-outs, earning him the sobriquet of “beggar” now.
In a GDP nominal of more than 280 billion American dollars, Pakistani author, Ayesha Siddiqa says the unaccounted money running to Pak army exceeds 25 billion US dollars. In her book, Military Inc—inside Pakistan’s military economy—Ayesha details into the huge fortune Pak army has built on the fake promise of Islamic supremacy and Kashmir’s liberation.Even when the Covid-19 has forced countries into austerity measures and focus onto localisation of resources, Pak army is pressurizing the Khan Govt to okay 20% hike salaries of the officers.
Fact of the matter is Pakistan doesn’t want to liberate Kashmir but use the sentiments of Kashmiris’ and their blood for eternity. Pak army knows any misadventure on Kashmir will force India to go hard at Balochistan, which the Pak Generals will not be able to defend then. So, as a low-cost measure, 250 to 300 terrorists are used in Kashmir to keep India on the hooks—which also gives people of Pakistan and many Kashmiris’ the false sense of Kashmir’s separation from India. It is high time to acknowledge the rise of India, and give Kashmir posterity a better tomorrow filled with sense of belonginess and retain the original concept of Kashmir which has a chrincled history of over five thousand years . We should remember that religion made Pakistan, and it will unmake it very soon. As of now, Kashmiris have read the reality and embrace this fact that Pakistan has become a launch pad for China and use her soil for anti-India, propaganda. Pakistan can be anything but a friend as have been proven by the destruction caused to Afghanistan, treatment met to fellow Pakistanis before separation of Bangladesh and to the minorities Pashtun, Balooch, Hindus, Christians and others. Kashmiri Mujhahirs in POK are living in deplorable conditions without a country to be called theirs and longing to return back. The future lies with us to prevent our own adolescents thinking of Jihad and violent extremism at the young age of 12 yrs.