After Amit Shah took charge of the Ministry of Home Affairs, the Centre has issued a fresh list of top 10 terrorists operating in Jammu and Kashmir who need to be eliminated.
Shah has been a staunch advocate of zero-tolerance towards terrorism in Kashmir.
In his capacity as the Home Minister, Shah faces the challenge of tackling anti-India sentiments and terrorism in Kashmir.
The list released by the Centre includes wanted terrorists of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Hizbul Mujahideen and Al Badr based on inputs shared with the Ministry by Jammu and Kashmir Police, Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) and Intelligence Bureau (IB).
Six of the top 10 militants named in the list belong to Hizbul Mujahideen, two from JeM, and one each from LeT and Al Badr terrorist organisation.
LeTs commander Wasim Ahmed alias Osama, active in Jammu and Kashmir’s Shopian district, and chief Hizbul Mujahideen commander Riyaz Naikoo alias Mohammed Bin Qasim are mentioned on the top of the list.
Hizbul Mujahideen’s Anantnag district commander Mohammad Asraf Khan, Baramulla district commander Mehraj-ud-Din, a cadre of Srinagar Dr Saifulla, Pulwama district commander Arshad-ul-Haq and Ajaj Ahmad Malik, probably appointed as Kupwara district commander, are in the list.
The list also includes Javed Matoo alias Faisal alias Shakib alias Musab, Divisional Commander of Al Badar in North Kashmir; Zaheed Sheikh alias Omar Afghani of JeM; and chief operational commander of JeM Hafiz Umar, a resident of Pakistan.
The list was revised to update the Home Minister about the targets of security agencies in Jammu and Kashmir.
The update followed the June 1 meeting of the Home Minister with Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba, IB chief Rajiv Jain, RAW chief Anil Dhasmana and senior officials of the Home Ministry.
It is learnt that Shah has directed the concerned officials in the Home Ministry and security agencies to continue with the zero-tolerance policy across the country.
In this direction, he has so far taken three meetings on internal security with special focus on Jammu and Kashmir.
He has been apprised on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, particularly in border areas by the Jammu and Kashmir Affairs division which deals with counter-terrorism, the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act and coordination between ministries, including external affairs and defence.
Meanwhile, protests have erupted in parts of Jammu and Kashmir with mobs putting up posters supporting terrorist Zakir Musa and UN-designated terrorist Masood Azhar while resorting to stone pelting at security forces near Jamia Masjid in Srinagar.
The banners showed writings supporting anti-national sentiments.
Protesters, during Friday prayers in the Jamia Masjid, had put up banners carrying the photograph of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) suicide bomber Adil Dar, who had rammed his RDX-laden vehicle into a CRPF convoy in Pulwama killing 40 personnel.
They waved Pakistani and ISIS flags and also raised slogans in support of top terrorist Zakir Musa, who was recently killed in an encounter with the security forces. The group of protesters also carried the photo of Pakistan-based JeM chief Masood Azhar.
They also clashed with the security forces outside the mosque.