The two fidayeens who carried out the suicide attack in Srinagar killing five CRPF men were from Pakistan, investigations showed, and the Pakistani militant arrested in a major breakthrough was a LeT recruit and assisted by a local.
The two fidayeens, who carried out the Wednesday attack, were identified as Haider, a resident of Sahiwal, 180 kms from Lahore, and Saif, a native of Dera Gazi Khan of Punjab Province, the sources said.
In all, two arrests have been made in connection with the attack after the Pakistani militant, 22-year-old Zubair alias Abu Tallah alias Riaz, was held from Chattabal area in the outskirts of the city late last night. The arrest was made while he was talking to his handlers through the SIM card provided by Bashir, a local, the sources said Zubair, a resident of Multan in Pakistan, is the second person to be arrested. He told the interrogators that he had dropped the two 'fidayeens' (suicide attackers) along with Bashir, who earlier carried out a recce of the force's camp at a school playground.
The local--Bashir Ahmed alias Haroon Bhai-- a resident of Uri in North Kashmir and who worked for the LeT, was earlier arrested in the initial breakthrough that came through a SIM card recovered from one of the two 'fidayeens'(suicide attackers).
Interestingly, Bashir was an informer for various security agencies and this time he appeared to have double-crossed them and instead helped Pakistan-based terror group Lashker-e-Taiba(LeT) in carrying out the attack.
It was Bashir's interrogation that led to the arrest of Zubair.
In the swift operations completed a day after the attack by the Special Operations Group of the Jammu and Kashmir police, the statements of the arrested persons were corroborated according to which the duo were part of the conspiracy to carryout the suicide attack.
According to the investigators, a group of five Lashker terrorists crossed over in Uri earlier this month out of which two had returned while others proceeded towards Srinagar.
Bashir, who stays in Srinagar, arranged the travel of the three to Tangmarg area of north Kashmir where all of them met on March 11 at a house belonging to a Sikh, who is a daily wager with Public Health department.
He later shifted them to Tankipora area in the city from where they were escorted to the CRPF camp in Bemina area on March 13 to carry out the suicide attack.
Bashir shifted the third militant to Chhatabal area where he was put up in an already created hideout.
Zubair showed no signs of resistance when he was being overpowered by the SOG personnel on a roof top in a densely populated area when he was talking to his handlers, they said.
During his night-long interrogation, the arrested terrorist gave details about his recruitment by terror outfit Lashker-e-Taiba(LeT) in Pakistan and also claimed he joined the outfit in view of the abject poverty he was living in.
Zubair has two sisters and an elder brother in Pakistan and the family is reported to be financially weak with the father working in farms, the sources said.
He has undergone several training sessions with LeT including those given by known Lashkar commanders like Hanzullah and Furqaan, police claimed, and said he had attended the last training session six months back.
However, he has not been able to provide the actual identity of the two terrorists who carried out the suicide attack.
The two terrorists, disguised as cricketers, stormed a CRPF camp here in the first major attack in the city in three years. They were killed by the security personnel.