- 2 Years of Pulwama attack
February 14, 2021, marks two years after the terrorist attack in Pulwama when 40 Indian soldiers were killed in one of the deadliest terrorist attacks in Jammu and Kashmir. A ‘black day’ in the history of India. It occurred after an IED-laden vehicle was rammed into a security convoy by a suicide bomber. There were 78 buses in the convoy, with some 2,500 personnel traveling from Jammu to Srinagar. The attack, registered near Awantipora at almost 3:15 pm, resulted in 40 CRPF soldiers being killed, while many others were injured. Days later, the attack was announced by the Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist group based in Pakistan (JeM). Adil Ahmad Dar, a 22-year-old suicide bomber, rammed an explosive-laden vehicle into a truck. JeM also posted a video of a Kakapora attacker, Adil, who had joined the party a year earlier.
Attack of Pulwama: What Analysis Indicated
The Jammu and Kashmir police worked with a 12-member team sent by the National Investigation Agency to investigate the Pulwama terror attack. Initial research indicated that more than 300 kilograms (660 lb) of explosives, including 80 kilograms (180 lb) of high explosive and ammonium nitrate RDX, were carried by the vehicle.
Lt Gen Hooda said the explosives could have been stolen from a building site. Initially, he said they could not have been smuggled from across the border, but later said he could not rule it out.
Later, as DNA samples from “meagre fragments of the car” used in suicide attacks matched with Adil Ahmad Dar’s father, the National Investigation Agency could establish and confirm the identity of the suicide bombers. However, the NIA was unable to locate the source of the explosives even after a year of investigation.
Pulwama Attack: Airstrike at Balakot, India-Pakistan Clash
The government of India urged the Financial Action Task Force Laundering (FATF) to put Pakistan on the blacklist after the Pulwama terror attack. The FATF agreed to keep it on the ‘gray list’ and gave Pakistan time to comply with the 27 conditions it had laid down in June 2018 until October 2019, when it was placed on the ‘gray list’ with a participating caveat. It would be added to the blacklist if Pakistan did not comply. The state administration removed security guarantees for separatist leaders on 17 February.
Twelve Mirage 2000 Indian Air Force jets crossed the Line of Control (LoC) on February 26 and dropped bombs at Balakot, Pakistan. India said it had targeted a Jaish-e-Mohammed training camp and killed a large number of terrorists, ranging from 300 to 350 reportedly. Meanwhile, Pakistan reported that to intercept the IAF aircraft, they quickly scrambled jets, which lowered their payloads to return quickly over the Control Line.
On February 27, in retaliation for the Indian airstrike the day before, the Pakistan Air Force carried out an airstrike against Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan and India both agreed that Pakistan’s airstrike did not cause any harm. However, an Indian MiG-21 was shot down over Pakistan and its pilot, Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, was caught in a subsequent dogfight between Indian and Pakistani jets. Subsequently, Pakistan released Varthaman on March 1.
Deadly Terror Attacks History In Jammu & Kashmir
Since 2015, high-profile suicide attacks against Indian security forces have steadily been carried out by Pakistan-based terrorists in Kashmir. Three gunmen assaulted a bus and a police station in Gurdaspur in July 2015. Early in 2016, Pathankot Air Force Station was targeted by four to six gunmen. Terrorists in Pampore killed nine and eight security personnel in February and June 2016, respectively. In September 2016, four assailants assaulted the headquarters of an Indian Army brigade in Uri, killing 19 soldiers. Militants also targeted the Commando Training Centre in Lethpora on 31 December 2017, killing five security personnel. These attacks occurred near the Jammu Srinagar National Highway.