India on Monday told the main UN Security Council powers that it feels pressure to hit back at Pakistan after accusing its neighbor of arming four militants shot dead in a gun battle last week, diplomats who attended a special meeting said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said the four were plotting “to wreak major havoc” with an attack aiming to disrupt local elections in the disputed territory of Kashmir starting this week.
A top Indian foreign ministry official handed over a dossier to envoys from the Security Council permanent members – the United States, France, Britain, Russia and China – which it said showed Pakistan involvement in the militant operation.
A government official said the meeting was to put across India’s concerns on “the implications of the incident on security, diplomacy and the battle against terrorism.”
A diplomatic source added that India had indicated that it felt “under pressure” to take action over the infiltration.
India accuses Pakistan of aiding militants fighting Indian rule in Kashmir, while Pakistan insists it gives only diplomatic support to the separatist cause. It has denied any knowledge of the four men killed last Thursday.
According to Indian officials the four were members of the Jaish-e-Mohammad group and crossed from Pakistan in a one meter-wide tunnel that was discovered at the weekend two days after the highway shootout in Jammu district.
They said the four were planning the “biggest” attack since a suicide bomber killed 40 Indian paramilitaries in Kashmir in February 2019, setting off tit-for-tat air raids by the two neighbors who have disputed the Himalayan region since their independence in 1947.
That attack was also blamed on JeM, whose leader Masood Azhar has since been put on a Security Council terrorist list.
The government official said the new operation aimed to “sabotage” local elections in Kashmir, the first since New Delhi stripped the region of its semi-autonomy in August 2019.
The four were stopped at a toll booth in the Nagrota area of Jammu last Thursday and were killed in a three-hour gun battle with security forces.
Indian officials said that 11 AK-47 rifles, 29 grenades and 7.5 kilograms (16 pounds) of RDX explosive were found in their truck.