`Foreign Muslim fighters in militant camps in PoK`

Hundreds of students are reportedly being trained to wage jihad against India.

Last Updated: Nov 04, 2010, 17:08 PM IST

London: Hundreds of university students, including foreigners are being trained in militant camps in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, which have become active again, to wage `jihad` against India.

After a lull, several militant outfits have now again raised their heads and increased their activities in and around Muzaffarabad, capital of PoK, and pro-Jihad slogans can be seen on the walls of the city, BBC Urdu Service reported.

A 25-year-old engineering student from Lahore, fresh from a training stint in one of camps told BBC from PoK capital Muzzaffarabad, that "a large number of youths from Pakistani universities and abroad are undergoing training in PoK under supervision of a militant group to wage jihad against India”.

The student, who identified himself as a Kashmiri, said he received two-month training in PoK after finishing his engineering course this year.

"Around 20 percent youths in the training camps are from Kashmir and 10 per cent are from other countries...Majority of those receiving training are from Pakistan`s Punjab province," he claimed.

He also said that many other students from his university have joined the militant training programme run by a tanzeem (group) located near Lahore, an apparent reference to Jamaat-ud-Dawa, which is headquartered at Murdike on the outskirts of the city.

He said a decision to send them to Kashmir will be taken by the Tanzeem`s Amir.

"We could be sent to Kashmir or we could be stationed in Pakistan itself for propagating Islam," he said in response to a question.

He claimed that his family approved his association with the jihadi group. However, when contacted his mother was upset over her son`s decision.

"My son asked permission for propagating Islam which I gave him. But I was not aware that he associated himself with the jihadi group," she said.

"After returning home, he told me that he has received militant training and wants to join jihad. I was disappointed and I told him you cannot go to Kashmir to fight till I`m alive," she said.

The claims made by the student contradict Pakistan`s Interior Minister Rehman Malik who had recently denied reports of existence of militant camps in PoK.

PTI