As a lesser-known terror outfit claimed responsibility for the “attack” on a bus carrying pilgrims of Mata Vaishno Devi on May 13, teams of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and Intelligence Bureau (IB) visited the site and inspected the ill-fated vehicle that was gutted in a mysterious fire.
Four persons were killed and 24 others injured when the moving bus, mostly ferrying devotees, caught fire near Nomai, about three kilometers from Katra, shortly after leaving for Jammu from the base camp on Friday evening.
Though the survivors and the people residing in the vicinity of the incident spoke about hearing an explosion in the bus, Additional Director General (ADG) of Police, Jammu zone, Mukesh Singh, who inspected the scene, said the initial probe does not point to use of any explosive.
“The bus caught fire on its way from Katra to Jammu. The cause of the fire is not confirmed yet,” Singh had told reporters, adding a forensic team is looking into it.
A specially trained NIA explosive team visited the spot on Saturday evening and collected samples during their one-and-a-half-hour stay there, the officials said. The team was briefed by a senior police officer about the incident.
A lesser-known terror outfit claimed responsibility
‘The Jammu and Kashmir Freedom Fighters (JKFF)-a lesser-known terror outfit claimed responsibility of the Friday incident. In a letter, which has gone viral on social media, the unknown outfit claimed responsibility for the attack saying that the bus had been targeted with an Improvised Explosive Device (IED).
The letter is issued by one Nadeem Choudary, claimed to be the spokesperson terror group. “In the guise of religious pilgrimage, this Hindutva regime is trying its best to change the demography of Jammu and Kashmir. But we will sabotage their filthy propaganda at every level. This attack is linked to a series of bombings carried out by our special squad at the Jammu, Udhampur, and Rajouri areas. We warn the non-locals who are used as cannon fodder by this Hindutva regime not to visit the disputed territory”, the letter reads as.
Identifies of all four deceased established
Identities of all the four deceased have been established through some documents and identification by their relatives. Four deceased including three pilgrims of Mata Vaishno Devi and one local woman.
The four deceased have been identified as Laxmi, in her 30s, from Barabanki in Uttar Pradesh, Meena Devi, 40, of Pamote village in Katra; Bagheswar Chouhan, 55, of Gazipur in UP and his three-year-old grandson Shivam Chouhan.
Four persons were killed and 24 others injured when the moving bus, mostly ferrying devotees, caught fire near Nomai, about 3km from Katra, shortly after leaving for Jammu on Friday.