The National Investigation Agency (NIA) has arrested Jammu and Kashmir resident Bilal Ahmed Kuchey for playing a key role in the 2019 Pulwama terror attack that killed 40 CRPF troopers in Kashmir valley, an official agency release said on Tuesday.
Bilal had provided logistical support to the group of terrorists that planned the attack on February 14, when an explosives laden van was rammed into a convoy of Central Reserve Police Force travelling on the national highway in Pulwama area, the release states.
“The main perpetrators in this case stayed in his house and he further introduced them to other OGWs who provided safe houses during their stay and planning of the attack,” the NIA says.
According to the agency, Bilal also provided the Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorists with “high-end mobile phones” to communicate with Pakistan based JeM leadership and among themselves for planning and execution of the attack.
“Further the mobile phone provided by him was also used for recording the video clip of Fidayeen Adil Ahmed Dar, which became viral after the attack,” NIA’s release said.
Adil Ahmed Dar was the one who had driven the van into the CRPF convoy.
Bilal is the seventh person to be arrested in Pulwama case. Last Thursday, NIA had arrested a Budgam resident Mohammad Iqbal Rather (25), a member of JeM’s “transportation module” that ferried infiltrating terrorists from the border to Kashmir in February 2019 before the attack.
Rather is accused of allegedly facilitating the movement of one of the terrorists– Muhammad Umar Farooq– who helped in making the bomb, officials had said, Rather helped Farooq facilitate his movement through the national highway near the international border to South Kashmir he infiltrated into the Indian territory in Jammu region in April, 2018.
The other five arrested earlier this year in the Pulwama attack case include Shakir Bashir Magrey, Mohammad Abbas Rather, Waiz-ul-Islam, a young girl – Insha Jan and her father Tariq Ahmad Shah.