Uri Attack:’Guides’ to walk free as NIA finds no evidence

NEW DELHI: The National Investigation Agency has filed a closure report in the case relating to two “guides” from Pakistan-administered Kashmir (PaK), initially suspected to have helped the militants that attacked the Indian Army camp at Uri on September 18, 2016, as the charges against the duo could not be substantiated, repoorted TOI on Sunday.

The two youths — Faisal Hussain Awan and Ahsan Khursheed — are likely to be returned to Pakistan as part of a “goodwill” arrangement under which Indian Army soldier Chandu Chavan was sent back here last month. The custody of the two youths provided leverage to India in ensuring Chavan’s return.

The NIA decided to file the closure report after its probe did not find evidence to corroborate the initial “confessional statement” the two youths made to the Indian Army. The two were arrested on September 21 last year after the attack in which militants killed 19 Indian soldiers. The investigation into the larger conspiracy behind the Uri terror strike will, however, continue.

News report quoting sources in the security establishment said the “swap” is part of the arrangement that saw Chavan being sent back by the Pakistani army. India has now initiated the process to send back Awan and Khursheed after the NIA probe found them to be youths who inadvertently crossed over from PaK and seemingly not having any link with the Uri attack.

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