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MHA seeks Interpol help to combat ISI-related activities - The Observer

Observer Political Bureau ()
July 9, 1998

Title: MHA seeks Interpol help to combat ISI-related activities
Author: Observer Political Bureau
Publication: The Observer
Date: July 9, 1998

The Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has sought assistance of
the Interpol for preventing the resurgence of the Inter Services
Intelligence (ISI)-related activities along the Indo-Nepal border
- with such activities having substantially slowed down in the
region after the killing on June 29 of the kingpin of such
operations in the region, Mirza Dilshad Beg.

Indian Intelligence agencies have the information that efforts
were being initiated by Pakistan to groom a successor to Mirza
Dilshad Beg who, along with his driver, was gunned down in broad

The names of possible successors being mentioned include two
former ministers in the Nepal Government and known associates of
the late Mirza - Khem Bahadur Kharka and Suresh Chandra Yadav,
both former ministers.

There are charges against both Kharka and Yadav relating to their
anti-India activities and the Interpol had even initiated an
inquiry against Kharka in the matter sometime back. Kharka had to
resign from the Nepal Cabinet following the institution of the
Interpol inquiry against him.

Intelligence sources said that Pakistan was finding it difficult
to find a rightful heir to the throne left vacant by Mirza since
both Kharka and Yadav were, in the perception of the ISI
masterminds, not dentified too closely with the psyche of the
Muslims in the region.

The search for an adequate person for the job was said to be
still on, to the intelligence sources.

Following its assumption of office in March this year, the Atal
Behari Vajpayee-led coalition Central Government had taken
instant steps towards having the activities of the ISI
mercenaries recorded and filed at the different police stations
along the Indo-Nepal border.

It had been noticed that a proper record about the ISI insurgents
did not exist at the Indian police stations.

The Uttar Pradesh State Government, in particular, therefore, had
been asked to take urgent steps towards having the first
information report (FIRs) recorded and the chargesheets prepared.

The assistance of the Interpol and also been sought for purposes
of tracking down the movements and operations of the ISI agents
in the region.

Meanwhile, mystery continues to surround the death of Mirza
Dilshad Beg, with several speculations being voiced in the
regard. One version is that the killers may having belonged to
the Chhota Rajan gang. The reason being stated is that since the
Mirza owned allegiance to the Dawood Ibrahim group, he had earned
the animosity of the Chhota Rajan group.

The other version of course, is that the Indian Intelligence
agencies may have masterminded the killing of the Mirza for
obvious reasons. A third version, meanwhile, is that the Inter
Services Intelligence (ISI) agents may have themselves decided to
eliminate the Mirza in view of the fact that the Indian
Intelligence agencies had gathered substantial information and
facts about him and his arrest and possible deportation to India
had become a distinct possibility.

Mirza Dilshad Beg had been solely responsible for spreading the
ISI network in the region and for the success of the operations
codenamed peration K-2 and peration Tehalka=94.

Himself a member of the Nepali Panchayat and a former Minister,
the Mirza is understood to have funded several adarasas and
schools that had mushroomed along the borders during the last few

Indian Intelligence agencies believe that during the last few
years, the porous borders along Nepal had been used as one of the
main routes for pumping arms and narcotics into India - with the
Mirza gang apparently playing a big part in such activities.

The ISI agents, from their safe havens in Nepal, are understood
to have established contact with several insurgent groups active
in India, including the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)
and the People's War Group (PWG), apart from several terrorist
group active North-East India such as the United Liberation Front
of Asom (ULFA), National Socialist Council of Nagaland (NSCN) and
the Bodo Security Force (BSF).

A substantial amount of explosives, including RDX, apart from
weapons, including Kalashnikov rifles and grenades, were
understood to have been finding their way into India from the
Nepal borders in recent months.

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