Impotent India » Terrorist organisations
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Terrorist, insurgent and extremist groups in India

HARKAT-UL-ANSAR (also known as Harkat-ul Mujahideen)

The Harkat-ul-Ansar was formed by the merger of two Pakistani groups, Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami and Harkat-ul-Mujahedin, and led by Maulana Saadatullah Khan. The merger of these two political groups and its transformation into a militant group came about as part of the Afghan jihad. With a pan-Islamic ideology, the outfit strove to achieve the secession of Jammu and Kashmir from India through violent means and its eventual merger with Pakistan.

About 60 per cent of its estimated 1000-strong cadre were Pakistanis and Afghans. The Harkat-ul-Ansar was termed a terrorist organization by the US due to its association with exiled Saudi terrorist Osama bin Laden in 1997. To avoid the repercussions of the US ban, the group was recast as the Harkat ul-Mujahideen in 1998. Based in Muzaffarabad, capital of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, the Harkat-ul-Ansar has participated in insurgent and terrorist operations in Kashmir, Myanmar, Tajikistan, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

In Kashmir, the outfit had carried out several operations against Indian troops besides attacks on civilian targets. In the process, several of its top leaders, including Masood Azhar (general secretary and top idologue), Sajjad Afghani (commander of the Harkat-ul-Ansar in Jammu and Kashmir) and Nasarullah Manzoor Langaryal (commander of the erstwhile Harkat-ul-Mujahedin) were captured by Indian security forces. With all these arrests, the outfit gradually lost its influence in the state's militancy.

LASHKAR-E-TAIBA (literal meaning: army of the pure)

Formed in 1990 in the Kunar province of Afghanistan, the Lashkar-e-Taiba (also known as Jama'at-ud-Da'awa) is based in Muridke near Lahore in Pakistan and is headed by Hafiz Muhammad Saeed. Its first presence in Jammu and Kashmir was recorded in 1993 when 12 Pakistani and Afghan mercenaries infiltrated across the Line of Control in tandem with the Islami Inquilabi Mahaz, a terrorist outfit then active in the Poonch district of the state.

The LeT is outlawed in India under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act. It was included in the Terrorist Exclusion List by the US government on December 5, 2001. The US administration designated the Lashkar-e-Taiba as a FTO (Foreign Terrorist Organization) on December 26, 2001. It is also a banned organization in Britain since March 30, 2001. The group was proscribed by the United Nations in May 2005. The military regime of Pervez Musharraf banned the Lashkar-e-Taiba in Pakistan on January 12, 2002.

JAISH-E-MOHAMMAD MUJAHIDEEN-E-TANZEEM (JeM) (literal meaning: the army of Mohammad)

The Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) has been held responsible for the terrorist attack on parliament in New Delhi. The outfit has been banned by the government under provisions of the Prevention of Terrorism Act (POTA) on October 25, 2001. The US Secretary of State, Colin Powell, in a notification on December 26, 2001, designated the outfit as a foreign terrorist organistation. JeM is a relatively new terrorist outfit, compared to other major outfits active in Jammu and Kashmir.

Like the Lashkar-e-Taiba the JeM, too, is an outfit formed, controlled and manned by Pakistan. The outfit was launched on January 31, 2000 by Maulana Masood Azhar in Karachi. The outfit's creation can be linked to the popularity surrounding Masood Azhar after his release from India. Maulana Masood Azhar was the general secretary of the newly-established Harkat-ul-Ansar (HuA) in 1994 and was on a 'mission' in J&K when he was arrested on February 11.


Al Badr, currently an active terrorist outfit in Jammu and Kashmir, was proscribed by the government of India on April 1, 2002 under the Prevention of Terrorism Ordinance-2001, which became the Prevention of Terrorism Act on April 28, 2002. It is also designated as a Foreign Terrorist Organization in the United States. The Al Badr was formed in June 1998 with the professed goal of strengthening the 'Kashmiri freedom struggle' and to 'liberate' Jammu and Kashmir and merge it with Pakistan.

The outfit advocates that Kashmiris should be given the right of self-determination in accordance with the United Nations resolutions. Al Badr reportedly traces its origins to 1971 when a group of the same name carried out attacks on Bengalis in what was then known as East Pakistan. The group also operated as part of the Hizb-e-lslami (HIG) of warlord Gulbuddin Hekmatyar in Afghanistan during the 1980s.


The existence of Lashkar-e-Jabbar was first reported by the local media in Jammu and Kashmir in August 2001 following two incidents. In the first incident, two unidentified youth poured diluted acid on two school teachers in the Khanyar area of Srinagar on August 7. The next day, an armed terrorist threatened all students and teachers of a girls school in Srinagar of violence unless they adopt 'Islamic' dress codes.

Following these incidents, an unidentified person is reported to have informed the local media in Srinagar that his outfit, the Lashkar-e-Jabbar, was responsible for these attacks. He added that the outfit meant "business in implementing the Islamic dress code in Kashmir". According to their interpretations, Muslim women must always wear the burqa in public. News reports in the aftermath of this information have also claimed that these attacks were preceded by isolated incidents of firing by unidentified terrorists on unveiled women in south Kashmir in the past two months which left three women injured.


The Tehreek-ul-Mujahideen (TuM) was formed in June 1990 by Yunus Khan, a close associate of Mohammed Abdullah Tairi, chief of the Jammu and Kashmir Jamaat-e-Ahle-Hadith. The TuM aims to merge Jammu and Kashmir with Pakistan and also promote a pan-Islamist identity. The protection of Asidih community, a small faction of Sunni Muslims, was a prime motivating factor for the outfit in its early days. Sheikh Jamil-ur-Rehman is the Amir (chief) of the organization. Maulana Fazlur Rahman, chief of his own faction of the Jamiat-Ulema-e-Islam and currently member of the National Assembly (MNA), is the patron of the Tehreek-ul-Mujahideen. The group suffered major setbacks in its early years when its founder Yunus Khan, then 'commander-in-chief', was killed in an encounter in 1991. Mohammed Salim Miron, who returned from Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) in July 1991 succeeded him. Later, in 1999, security forces in J&K killed its 'commander' Abu Waseem Salafi.

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