Mar 22, 2013 / 6:58 am
Police said Friday that they foiled a terror attack by a Kashmiri rebel group that was planning to target India's capital during celebrations of a major Hindu festival next week.
The arrest this week of a suspected agent from Kashmir's biggest rebel group, Hizb-ul Mujahedeen, led authorities to a hotel in Delhi's old quarter, where an assault rifle, several grenades and plastic explosives were discovered, said S. N. Srivastava, a senior Delhi police official.
Srivastava said the attack appeared to be a plot to avenge the recent hanging of Mohammed Afzal Guru, a Kashmiri militant who was convicted of involvement in a 2001 attack on India's Parliament that left 14 people dead.
The suspected agent, identified as Syed Liaqat Shah, was arrested Wednesday in a town along the Nepalese border following a tip, Srivastava told reporters. He said Shah told police the weapons were intended for an attack in New Delhi around the time of the popular Indian festival of Holi on Wednesday.
Shah told police he flew from Pakistan to Nepal's capital, Kathmandu, and then travelled by road to the India-Nepal border, Srivastava said.
Srivastava said Shah was instructed by his handlers in Pakistan to tear up his Pakistani passport upon reaching Kathmandu.
"He was told to destroy his passport so that all traces of Pakistani involvement are destroyed," Srivastava said.
India has long accused Pakistan of arming and training Islamic militants and unleashing them into India to attack government forces and other targets, a charge Islamabad denies.
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