FIR registered under UAPA in Jammu IAF station blast case; NIA likely to take over probe

By PTI

JAMMU: An FIR was registered Sunday under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act after two explosives-laden drones crashed into the IAF station at Jammu airport, officials said, while indicating the case may be taken over by the terror probe agency NIA.

The drones crashed into the IAF station at Jammu airport in the early hours of Sunday, perhaps the first time that suspected Pakistan-based terrorists have used unmanned aerial vehicles in an attack, the officials said.

An FIR was registered under relevant sections of the Explosive Substances Act, Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act and the Indian Penal Code (IPC) at Satwari police station on the application of a junior warrant officer of the IAF, the officials said.

“The NIA is likely to take over the case. They are already supervising the investigation at the scene of the blast after joining the probe,” one of the officials said.

He said an FIR was registered under UAPA sections 13/16/18/23 of the (unlawful activities/terrorist act/conspiracy/enhanced penalties), and IPC section 120-B (criminal conspiracy).

Sections 3 and 4 of the Explosive Substances Act (causing explosion likely to endanger life or property/attempt to cause explosion, or for making or keeping explosive with intent to endanger life or property) have also been included.

The explosions took place around 1.40 am within six minutes of each other.

The first blast ripped off the roof of a single-storey building at the high security technical area of the airport manned by the IAF in Satwari area of the city.

The second one was on the ground, the officials said.

Two IAF personnel were injured in the incident, which Jammu and Kashmir police chief Dilbag Singh has termed a “terror attack”.

Probe teams from the IAF and Special Forces have also visited the scene along with forensic experts to investigate the nature of the blast and collect evidence, they said.

Meanwhile, a battery of mediapersons camped outside the main gate of the IAF station hit by the twin blasts.

However, no out of ordinary movement was noticed at the gate except visits by senior officers of the Army, police, CRPF and other agencies.

Labourers engaged for routine work inside the station reported on schedule and were allowed in after usual checking of their identity cards and frisking.

Army quick reaction teams (QRTs) were seen making rounds to maintain watch outside the IAF station, while security forces also carried out area domination in the adjoining residential localities, the officials quoted above said.

Security has been beefed up across Jammu region including on highways where special checkpoints were set up to carry out checking of vehicles especially at the entry and exit points of the city.

DGP Dilbag Singh also said while officials were investigating the drone attack, another major strike was averted as a person, probably owing allegiance to the banned Lashkar-e-Taiba, was arrested along with an improvised explosive device weighing around six kg.

The person was tasked with triggering the IED blast at a crowded place, Singh said.

“The suspect has been detained and is being interrogated. More suspects are likely to be picked up in this foiled IED blast attempt.”

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