Government forces in Kashmir are alarmed by the recent arrival in the region of small, magnetic bombs that have wreaked havoc in Afghanistan.
Sticky bombs”, which can be attached to vehicles and detonated remotely, have been seized during raids in recent months in the federally administered region of Jammu and Kashmir, three senior security officials told Reuters.
“These are small IEDs and quite powerful,” Inspector General of Police Vijay Kumar, referring to improvised explosive devices. “It will certainly impact the present security scenario as volume and frequency of vehicular movements of police and security forces are high in Kashmir Valley.”
According to a report by Reuters, the arrival of the sticky bombs in Kashmir – including 15 seized in a February raid – raises concerns that an unnerving tactic attributed to the Taliban Afghanistan could be spreading to the region.
Afghanistan in recent months has seen a series of sticky-bomb attacks targeting security forces, judges, government officials, civil society activists and journalists. The attacks – some as victims sat in traffic – have sown fear, while avoiding substantial civilian casualties.
None of the devices seized in Kashmir was produced there, a senior security official said, suggesting they were being smuggled from Pakistan. “All of them have come via drone drops and tunnels,” he told the news wire.
Officials said the bombs are particularly worrying because they can be easily attached to vehicles using magnets, potentially allowing militants to carry out assassinations or target military convoys that regularly criss-cross the valley.