GUJRAT, Nov 15: Various law-enforcement agencies in a joint operation in Chah Beriwala locality on Wednesday night reportedly rounded up seven suspected militants, five of them allegedly belonging to a banned outfit, and recovered weapons, explosive material, suicide vests and grenades from them.
However, local police declined to confirm that such an operation was conducted.
Sources said Elite Force contingents from Gujranwala and Gujrat, along with intelligence agencies personnel, participated in a house-to-house search operation in a street of Chah Beriwala locality.
They said 30 hand-grenades, three suicide vests, as many detonators, seven Kalashnikovs and around 1,000 rounds of bullets were recovered in the operation, besides arrest of six suspected militants.
According to sources, a key militant, Muhammad Shafique, had also been arrested from Tanda area. The other suspects arrested during the operation included Zubair, Riaz, Saleem and Yasir, they added.
The sources said out of the seven arrested suspects, five belonged to a banned outfit and they were wanted in different cases of terrorism by the police of various districts of Punjab. They said the operation continued for more than an hour during which entire locality had been the cordoned off.
It is learnt that some cell phones had also been seized during the operation which might have been linked to acts of terror.
The arrested men had been running a paint shop in the city’s main bazaar and were known for their affiliation with a specific sect, the sources added.
They said security agencies had also raided a house near Bhimbher Road around a week ago but could not nab their target.
The arrest of the suspected militants and recovery of weapons is being termed a major success ahead of Muharram.