Live: PM Modi pays tribute to martyred CRPF heroes; mortal remains leave for native places

A suicide bomber from the Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror group rammed an explosives-laden vehicle into a CRPF bus in Pulwama district on Thursday afternoon.

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India on Friday withdrew the status of the Most Favoured Nation to Pakistan following the Awantipora attack in Jammu and Kashmir that killed at least 40 CRPF personnel. The CRPF has confirmed that a total of 40 CRPF personnel are confirmed dead. Of the total bodies, 36 bodies have been identified whereas four remain unidentified as of now. 

Following the high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, India decided to mull tough action against Pakistan and will prepare a dossier on the suicide attack.

READ | Explained: What is Most Favoured Nation

Prime Minister Narendra Modi warned saying, "The forces behind this act of terrorism and those responsible for it, will be definitely be punished."

The meeting was held to discuss the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir after one of the deadliest terror attacks in the state killed at least 40 personnel and critically wounded many. A suicide bomber from the Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror group rammed an explosives-laden vehicle into a CRPF bus in Pulwama district on Thursday afternoon.

READ | Awantipora suicide attack on CRPF convoy points to intelligence failure; Pakistan's ISI hand suspected

The Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) on Friday was headed by PM Modi and Defence Minister, Home Minister, External Affairs Minister and Finance Minister are its members.

More than 2,500 Central Reserve Police Force personnel, many of them returning from leave to rejoin duty in the Valley, were travelling in the convoy of 78 vehicles when they were ambushed on the Srinagar-Jammu highway at Latoomode in Awantipora in south Kashmir around 3.15 pm. The Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terror group has claimed responsibility for the attack that took place about 20 km from Srinagar, officials said.

READ | Awantipora suicide bomber Adil Ahmad Dar was a school dropout and C-category terrorist

Police identified the suicide bomber as Adil Ahmed, who officials said joined the Jaish in 2018. He was driving a vehicle packed with over 100 kg of explosives on the wrong side of the road and hit the bus, in which estimated 39-44 personnel were travelling, head-on, an official at the spot said.

READ | Nationwide protests against Awantipora suicide attack, people want 'revenge' from Pakistan

The powerful explosion, which reduced the bus to a mangled heap of iron, was heard many kilometres away, including in some parts of Srinagar adjoining Pulwama district. Body parts could be seen strewn around the area. 

Here are the live updates:

15 February 2019
21:51 PM

Mortal remains of martyred CRPF bravehearts depart for their native places.

20:40 PM

PM Modi pays homage to the fallen CRPF bravehearts.

20:13 PM

Rahul Gandhi pays tribute. Chiefs of the Indian Air Force and Indian Navy, apart from Chief of Indian Army, also pay their last respects.

20:11 PM

PM Modi has asked ministers in BJP-governed states and BJP MPs to attend the last rites of jawans in their respective states and constituencies.

20:10 PM

Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis announces compensation of Rs 50 lakh for the families of the jawans from the state.

20:07 PM

PM Modi has asked ministers in the BJP governed states and also the BJP MPs to attend the last rites of jawans, who lost their lives in the Pulwama attack, in their respective states and constituencies.

19:57 PM

PM Modi, Army Chief Bipin Rawat arrive to pay their final respect.

19:47 PM

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman reaches Palam Airport.

19:36 PM

C17 aircraft brings mortal remains of martyred CRPF personnel to Palam Airport's technical area. Home Minister Rajnath Singh also present here.

19:27 PM

PM Narendra Modi, Rahul Gandhi among others to pay tributes.

19:26 PM

Mortal remains of CRPF personnel martyred in yesterday's attack reach Delhi's Palam Airport.

19:23 PM

Congress president Rahul Gandhi is going to Palam Airport where the mortal remains of CRPF jawans are being brought on Friday.

19:17 PM

Visuals of protest from Lucknow:

19:17 PM

Representatives from different diplomatic missions leave from the Ministry of External Affairs.

19:15 PM

Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat announces an ex-gratia of Rs 25 lakh each to families of the jawans from the state who lost their lives in Pulwama attack. One member each from the families of the deceased jawans will also be given a government job, as per their qualification.

19:15 PM

MEA's meeting with representatives of various diplomatic missions in India concludes.

18:59 PM

Representatives from Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan and Nepal are also present in the meeting.

18:36 PM

Representatives from South Korea, Sweden, Slovakia, France, Spain and Bhutan are also present.

18:27 PM

Representatives from Germany, Hungary, Italy, European Union, Canada, Britain, Russia, Israel, Australia and Japan have arrived, reports ANI.

18:21 PM

India has briefed P5 nations - permanent members of the UN Security Council - about the ghastly terror attack that took place yesterday.

18:17 PM

Envoys and/or their representatives of several countries arrive at the Ministry of External Affairs as India launches a diplomatic offensive against Pakistan.

17:52 PM

An all-party meeting will be held on Saturday at 1100hrs in the Parliament library.

17:50 PM

"There are some elements who are hand in glove with terror organisations, terror forces and ISI across the border. They are involved in terror conspiracies too. They are toying with the future of the people, especially the youth in J&K," says Rajnath Singh. "There are some elements here who take money from Pakistan and ISI. I have told the officers that the security provided to such people should be reviewed."

17:34 PM

In Srinagar, Rajnath Singh said, "I've requested state governments to extend the maximum help they can lend to the bereaved families. I've given all the necessary directions to the officers. The morale has not taken a hit. We'll see this fight against terrorism to the end."

17:18 PM

Senior MEA officials are reaching out to all important partners via diplomatic missions in wake of the attack to apprise them of involvement of Pakistan backed terror groups: ANI sources

17:17 PM

A total of seven people have been detained for questioning. Of the seven, six are from Singoo Nabal and Laroo area and one of them is from Ramoo village. All the seven people are from Pulwama district. 

16:30 PM

Separatist leaders Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik stated that they "regret every killing" on Kashmir's soil, without mentioning the suicide attack by Pakistan-based terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed. "People and leadership of Kashmir regret every killing that happens on its soil," the statement said. "The delay in the resolution of the Kashmir dispute... Is wreaking havoc in Kashmir especially. If killing and counter killings have to stop and if we really want peace in the region, we have to put an end to hostilities. Engage and listen to the concerns of all three stakeholders and address them in the spirit of humanity and justice. Resolve the Kashmir dispute for all times," they added.

16:28 PM

Lt General (Retd) DS Hooda who oversaw 2016 Surgical strike operation said, "It's a big tragedy and very clearly Pakistan's hand is completely revealed in this. There needs to be a response to this. But let's have a more consistent and long term policy."

16:22 PM

The Siddhivinayak Ganapati Temple Trust has contributed a total of Rs 51 lakh to the families of the slain CRPF personnel.

16:19 PM

RDX was not used in the attack on CRPF in Pulwama, but a deadly weapon was built using the things used in the common industries. According to the specialists who inspected the spot, the nails and  iron pieces were added to make make it more harmful. To make this, the things needed were collected gradually from common shops.

16:19 PM

RDX was not used in the attack on CRPF in Pulwama, but a deadly weapon was built using the things used in the common industries. According to the specialists who inspected the spot, the nails and  iron pieces were added to make make it more harmful. To make this, the things needed were collected gradually from common shops.

16:14 PM

National Investigation Agency (NIA) reaches the site of Awantipora suicide attack and starts their investigation.

16:11 PM

RDX was not used in the attack on CRPF in Pulwama, but a deadly weapon was built using the things used in the common industries. According to the specialists who inspected the spot, nails, iron pieces were added to make it more harmful by filling. To make this, the things needed to be collected from common shops were collected gradually.

15:56 PM

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik hold meeting with officials in Srinagar.

15:47 PM

Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan Ajay Bisaria has been called to Delhi for consultations in the wake of the Awantipora attack. Bisaria will leave tonight for Delhi for the consultations on Saturday: ANI sources

15:46 PM

WATCH: Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Jammu and Kashmir DGP Dilbagh Singh lend a shoulder to mortal remains of a CRPF soldier in Budgam.

15:45 PM
14:43 PM

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik and Army's Northern Command chief Lt Gen Ranbir Singh, pay tribute to CRPF personnel.

14:41 PM

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh arrives in Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir. 

14:41 PM

In Jhansi, PM Modi said, "Our brave soldiers have sacrificed their lives and these sacrifices will not go in vain.The valour of our security forces has been witnessed by the country and there can be no one in our country who doubts their valour and bravery. Conspirators of Pulwama attack will be punished, our neighbouring country has forgotten that this is a new India. Pakistan is going through an economic crisis; Pakistan is roaming around with its begging bowl but it’s not getting help from the world. Our neighbours' intentions will be given a befitting reply by the people of India. All major world powers are standing with us&supporting us. The messages I have received show that they are not only sad, they are angry too. Everyone is in favour of ending terrorism."

14:25 PM

India on Friday summoned Pakistan's top envoy and lodged strong protest over the killing of 40 CRPF soldiers. Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale summoned Pakistan High Commissioner to India Sohail Mahmood and lodged strong protest over the killing of the CRPF soldiers in Pulwama, official sources said. 

14:24 PM

The IAS Association of Uttarakhand will contribute a day's salary to the family members of the CRPF personnel who lost their lives. The amount will be sent to the CRPF Headquarters in Delhi.

13:16 PM

The movement of the convoys of security forces in Kashmir has been suspended. A curfew has also been imposed in Jammu as a precautionary measure in view of massive protest after the attack and stone pelting, said officials. The Army has been requested to help the administration in maintaining law and order, said officials. The curfew has been imposed at Bus Stand, Nawabad, Bakshi Nagar, Peer Mitha, Pacca Danga, Channi Himmat, Janipur, Domana, and Bagh-E-Bahu areas.

13:10 PM

China again declines to back India's appeal to list JeM chief Masood Azhar as global terrorist by the UN following the Pulwama attack. 

13:09 PM

Navjot Singh Sidhu said, "It is condemnable, it's a cowardly act. It needs a permanent solution through dialogue, how long will the Jawans sacrifice their lives? How long will the bloodshed continue? People who do this must be punished. Hurling abuses won't help."

13:08 PM

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh accompanied by Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba leaves for Srinagar, Jammu & Kashmir.

13:07 PM

Locals protest against Pakistan in Jammu and Kashmir's Kathua district.

12:59 PM

Following the attack, CRPF said, "We will not forget, We will not forgive. We salute our martyrs and stand with the families of our martyr brothers. This heinous attack will be avenged."

12:52 PM

The mortal remains of the CRPF personnel who lost their lives in at a CRPF camp in Budgam district of Jammu and Kashmir.

12:40 PM

Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das has announced a compensation of Rs one lakh rupees to the family of a martyred CRPF personnel, a resident of Gumla. The state government also promised a government job to one member of the family.

12:38 PM
12:31 PM

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur announces Rs 20 lakh compensation to the family of a CRPF personnel who lost his life.

12:25 PM

Ahead of Home Minister Rajnath Singh's visit, K Vijay Kumar, the advisor to Jammu and Kashmir Governor, led a team of top police officials on a visit to Lethpora on the Srinagar-Jammu National Highway, the site of one of the deadliest terrorist attacks on security forces. Kumar, who holds the charge of home portfolio in the governor's administration, was accompanied by Director General of Police Dilbag Singh and Additional DGP Munir Ahmad Khan. The team visited the site to get a first-hand account of the incident as Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Governor Satya Pal Malik are scheduled to arrive later in the day.

12:05 PM

Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said, "Pakistan is trying to destabilise the country. The nation respects their sacrifice, country will always be indebted to the security forces. Their sacrifice won't go in vain. The country will give them a befitting reply."

12:00 PM

Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said, "Today is the day of mourning. Our country has lost close to 40 armed forces jawans and our foremost duty is to convey to their families that we are with them. We shall never compromise with the terrorist forces."

11:46 AM

Congress condemns Awantipora attack. Congress president Rahul Gandhi said, "This is a terrible tragedy. This type of violence done against our soldiers is absolutely disgusting. We are all standing together with our jawans. No force can divide or break this country. This is a time of mourning, sadness, and respect. We are fully supporting the govt of India and our security forces. We are not going to get into any other conversation apart from this."

11:46 AM

PM Narendra Modi warned of strict action and retaliation against those behind the Awantipora attack. He strictly warned Pakistan cautioning them that their plans to weaken India with terror attacks will never materialise. The prime minister warned that those behind the terror strike will be severly punished and will have to pay a "very heavy price". PM Modi said security forces will be given complete freedom to crack down on terrorism, and the "blood of the people is boiling".

10:55 AM

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley addressed a press conference after the hig-level meet.

"MEA will initiate all possible diplomatic steps which are to be taken to ensure the complete isolation from the international community of Pakistan of which incontrovertible is available of having a direct hand in this act," said Arun Jaitley. "India withdraws Most Favoured Nation status to Pakistan after the attack, said Jaitley. 

The CCS to take asesment and discuss the incidemt. The CCS observed two- minute silence for the martyred CRPF, expressed gratitude to those who made the sacrifice and expressed condolence to the families. The CRPF will transport the bodies to the families.

10:29 AM

Minister of State (MoS) and former Army Chief VK Singh said, "Appropriate action will be taken, it's a very sad incident, it's deplorable, it's something which should lead us to taking action, so that this should not happen again. Pakistan must take action against JeM & Masood Azhar, the onus is on Pak now."

10:28 AM

The dead body of the martyrs will be brought to Palam Airport in the national capital and PM Modi will pay tribute at the airport.

10:13 AM

Apart from giving a befitting reply to Pakistan over the attack, the PM Modi government will prepare a dossier on the attack in which there will be credible evidence that Pakistan is behind the attack, said sources. Through this, Pakistan will be segregated at the diplomatic level, added the sources.

10:11 AM

Father of CRPF Personnel Ratan Thakur's (who lost his life) in Bhagalpur said, "I have sacrificed a son in Mother India's service, I will send my other son as well to fight, ready to give him up for Mother India, but Pakistan must be given a befitting reply."

10:06 AM
10:03 AM

Indian Air Force (IAF) C-17, transporter aircraft, to go to Jammu and Kashmir's Srinagar from Hindon to get the mortal remains of CRPF personnel. The bodies will be brought to Delhi and the wreath lying will also be done in the national capital.

10:02 AM

Experts of anti-terror commando force the National Security Guard (NSG) and investigators of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) left for Jammu and Kashmir to join the probe into the terror attack in Pulwama, PTI reported quoting officials.

 

09:48 AM

Former Army Chief, Bikram Singh, "It shows change in tactics of terrorists. IED has been used after a long time, IEDs were used in the past, in 2001-2002 when I was there, this was a normal practice of terrorists, then they resorted to firing from distance. But this thing where a local boy who has been radicalised, he has undertaken a 'fidayeen' action on a moving convoy, shows the emboldened instance of  local terrorists, also the fact that radicalisation levels have gone up."

09:33 AM

Even as the Government blames Pakistan over its continuous covert support to terror operators, the investigation so far has pointed to a major intelligence failure in averting the deadly suicide attack on the CRPF convoy. Though terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) has claimed responsibility, it has raised suspicion over Pakistan's spy agency ISI's back-door involvement in the gruesome attack.

The JeM claiming responsibility has raised questions over the role of the Pakistan spy agency, ISI, in the gruesome strike, a former CIA analyst and South Asian expert claimed. According to experts, the attack has direct footprints inside Pakistan as it has now emerged that ISI had provided training, logistic support and explosives to the mastermind of the Pulwama attack on the CRPF troopers.

The security experts also see this as a major intelligence failure on the part of Indian intelligence agencies in averting the incident. Though they were credible actionable intelligence inputs regarding possible terror attacks in J&K, there was a clear lack of coordination among various intelligence agencies which clearly failed to detect that a suicide attack of such a magnitude can take place.     

The failure to sensitise the Srinagar-Jammu national highway  - a favoured route for terrorists to target security forces – is also questionable.

09:31 AM

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman returned to India from Sweden to attend a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS).

09:28 AM

In the meet at 7, Lok Kalyan Marg, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, NSA Ajit Doval, all three defence chiefs (Indian Army, Indian Navy, Indian Air) and the CRPF DG are present.

09:14 AM

All political programmes of BJP leaders, including PM and party chief, for Friday cancelled in wake of Pulwama Terror attack, say BJP sources.

09:06 AM

US asks Pakistan to immediately end 'support' and 'safe haven' to all terror groups operating on its soil after Pulwama terrorist attack.

09:01 AM

In strong words, Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik said, "Pakistan is frustrated, after successful elections they could not recruit new terrorists, stone pelting has stopped, so it wanted to do something. We have alerted all installations and cantonments as Pakistan may do something else. Pakistan is talking nonsense. The terrorists are holding open rallies in Pakistan, saying we will do something and openly threatening India. I will be leaving for the wreath laying ceremony of the martyrs in Kashmir. HM Rajnath Singh is also coming. We will hold a review meeting with top security and intelligence officials. We will find out where the lapses occurred."

09:00 AM

Experts of the anti-terror commando force National Security Guard (NSG) and investigators of the National Investigation Agency (NIA) will arrive in Jammu and Kashmir to join the probe into the suicide terror attack in Pulwama. An NIA team with forensic experts is being sent to Srinagar to assist Jammu and Kashmir Police in forensic evaluation of the scene of the crime, a Home Ministry official said. Explosive specialists of the Black Cat commando force NSG will also join in the investigation into the attack, another official said.

08:58 AM

Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh will also arrive in Srinagar to take stock of the security situation. Singh on Thursday had assured will be avenged. In a statement, he said the central government is determined to foil the designs of those who want to disrupt peace through such a terror attack "sponsored and sheltered by Pakistan". "Jaish-e-Mohammed has carried out this terror attack. We assure the country that we will undertake whatever it takes to avenge this," he said. He will also hold review meetings with senior security and police officials to make the ground-level assessment and review further operational actions. He called up Governor Satya Pal Malik, who apprised him about the prevailing situation in the state.

08:58 AM

A Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) will meet shortly to discuss the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir in the wake of one of the worst suicide attacks on the CRPF convoy which killed at least 44 troopers and left the security establishment stunned. According to reports, the CCS meeting is likely to take place at 9:15 AM, the sources said. The CCS is headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Union Home Minister rajnath Singh, External Affairs Minister Sushma Saraj and Finance Minister are its members.

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