The Centre banned two groups and declared an individual a terrorist for their subversive and anti-India activities. The two groups are the Jammu and Kashmir Ghaznavi Force (JKGF), which has been formed with cadres from terrorist organisations such as the Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed; and the Khalistan Tiger Force (KTF), which aims to revive terrorism in Punjab.
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More About This Development: Jammu & Kashmir Ghaznavi Force and Khalistan Tiger Force:
- The home ministry said Punjab-resident Harwinder Singh Sandhu alias Rinda, who was one of the masterminds behind an attack on the intelligence headquarters of the Punjab Police in 2021, was declared a terrorist.
- The JKGF has been involved in infiltration bids, narcotics and weapon smuggling, terror attacks in the Union Territory, and issuing threats to security forces.
- The JKGF draws its cadres from various proscribed terrorist organisations, such as the Lashker-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammed, Tehreek-ul-Mujahideen, Harkat-ul-Jehad-e-Islami and others, the home ministry said.
- The KTF came into existence in 2011 as an offshoot of the Babbar Khalsa International, a proscribed terrorist organisation under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
- The KTF is a militant outfit and it aims reviving terrorism in Punjab with a view to achieve its agenda of formation of a separate state of Khalistan, and thereby challenges the territorial integrity, unity, national security and sovereignty of India, the home ministry said.
- The KTF promotes acts of terrorism, it said, adding investigation agencies have found involvement of its cadres in various terrorist cases, including targeted killings.
- Its members in India are receiving financial and logistics support including sophisticated weaponry from their foreign-based handlers, it said.
- Sandhu alias Rinda, who is currently based in Lahore and associated with the banned group Babbar Khalsa International (BKI), has been declared a terrorist.
- Sandhu is alleged to be one of the masterminds behind an attack on the intelligence headquarters of the Punjab Police in 2021.
- A Red Corner Notice was also issued against him by the Interpol.
- The home ministry said the JKGF has been using various social media platforms to incite the people of Jammu and Kashmir to join terrorist outfits against India.
A National Security Threat:
The terror group is detrimental to national security and the sovereignty of India and is involved in terrorism. It has committed and participated in various acts of terrorism in the country, the ministry said. In exercise of powers conferred by the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the JKGF and KTF have been designated as terror groups, the notification stated. The JKGF is the 43rd and KTF 44th terror group to be declared outlawed under the anti-terror law.
Pakistan-based terrorist groups and India’s Sovereignty:
The home ministry further said Harwinder Singh Sandhu has direct links with Pakistan-based terrorist groups and is also involved in cross-border smuggling of arms, ammunition and militant hardware, besides drugs on a large scale.
He was involved in various criminal offences like murder, attempt to murder, contract killing, robbery and extortion in Punjab, Maharashtra, Haryana, West Bengal, Himachal Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh, the ministry said. Singh is now the 54th individual to be designated as a terrorist by the government.
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