The terrorist in Thursday’s deadly terror attack, in which 40 soldiers were killed, drove up next to a massive security convoy on the Jammu-Srinagar highway and detonated around 60 kg of powerful RDX, sources in the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) have said, revealing new findings in one of Jammu and Kashmir’s worst attacks in decades.
Initially, investigators had said that the Jaish-e-Mohammed suicide bomber, Adil Ahmad Dar, rammed a CRPF bus with his Scorpio SUV carrying 350 kg of explosives.
But it appears now that what the terrorist was driving was a sedan, not an SUV, and it had RDX that blew up in a 150-metre radius. The bomber didn’t ram the bus but detonated the explosives right next to it, after overtaking the convoy of 78 buses from the left.
So great was the impact of the explosion that a body was flung 80 metres away.
Sources say the explosives had a “shaped charge” designed for focused impact and to penetrate armour. The bus was blown to bits and reduced to mangled steel parts. There were human remains scattered across a 100 metre stretch of the highway.
The Pulwama terror attack was the deadliest in Jammu and Kashmir since the start of the century
It is not clear how Dar, a 22-year-old school dropout who stayed just 10 km from the blast site, managed to get hold of the RDX and who helped him.
Investigators will also examine how he managed to access the highway that had been sanitised hours before for the CRPF convoy.
The scale of the attack indicates long planning over months by the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed, run by Masood Azhar, who roams freely in Pakistan.
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