Anantnag: The escape of Pakistani militant Naved Jutt alias Abu Hanzullah following a shootout in Srinagar’s SMHS hospital on Tuesday is being described as a tough challenge for the security agencies, given his “credentials” of being a well-trained, skilled, intelligent militant.
Hanzullah, a resident of Sahiwala area in Pakistan’s Multan province, was arrested on June 20 in Shampora village of Yaripora in Kulgam district. He was lodged at the Central Jail in Srinagar since.
Deputy Inspector General (DIG) of Central Kashmir Range, Ghulam Hassan Bhat, told media persons that a red alert has been sounded in Srinagar and the city’s peripheries in a bid to nab the escaped militant.
A senior police officer who has served for a long time in southern Kashmir and was privy to Hunzalla’s arrest and subsequent interrogation, told Kashmir Reader that Hanzullah was a close associate of Abu Qasim, the slain Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) commander.
“I have not in my career encountered a more intelligent or a better trained militant than this fellow named Abu Hanzullah,” the police officer said, requesting anonymity.
He said that Hanzullah’s escape will be a huge boost to militancy in Kashmir both morally and militarily, “unless he is apprehended soon enough.”
“I have seen many militants in my career but none like this man. He is better both in intelligence and training than his predecessors like Abu Qasim and Abu Dujana,” the officer said.
The officer went to the extent of saying that Hunzalla was a military mind at par with some of the best even among the security forces.
Another senior police officer, who was posted in Kulgam district when Hanzullah was arrested, had a similar opinion about the Multan resident.
Hanzullah, as per the police officers, had been active in south Kashmir for about two years at the time of his arrest in 2014.
Asked how big a challenge Hunzalla’s escape was, J&K Director General of Police (DGP), SP Vaid, said it was always a challenge to counter militancy. “Yes, Pakistanis like Indians are very intelligent people but let’s not forget that Kashmiris are super intelligent,” Vaid said. “It’s just a matter of time (that Hanzullah is arrested),” he added.