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Khalistan Zindabad Force

Incidents and Statements involving Khalistan Zindabad Force: 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2008-2012

Objective, Organisation and Leadership

The Khalistan Zindabad Force (KZF), a proscribed group under The Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967, aims to establish a ‘sovereign Khalistan state’.

Although the exact cadre strength and organisational structure of the KZF is not known, it is largely comprised of Jammu-based Sikhs.

Ranjit Singh Neeta heads the KZF. Originally a resident of the Sumbal Camp area in Jammu, Neeta is reportedly now based somewhere in Pakistan. One of the 20 terrorists that India wants Pakistan to deport, Neeta began his career as a small-time criminal and subsequently developed links with smugglers in the R.S. Pora and Samba areas. His name figures in at least six First Information Reports filed after bomb blasts on trains and buses running between Jammu and Pathankot between 1988 and 1999. He is also alleged to have been involved in the killing of Deputy Superintendent of Police Devinder Sharma in Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir in October 2001.

Neeta's second in command, Amritpal Singh Romi, was killed in an encounter in 2000.

Khuram Masih alias Manjit Singh alias Kala alias Akaal, a Christian-turned-Sikh and a close associate of Neeta, was shot dead by the police during an encounter at village Dablehar in the RS Pura Sector of Jammu on December 28, 2000. Reportedly a ‘hit-man’ for Neeta, Khuram Masih was involved in at least 20 explosions in Jammu, Punjab and New Delhi.

Ravinder Kaur alias Tutu, another leading member of the KZF, was arrested from Rudrapur in the State of Uttar Pradesh on March 30, 1998. Ravinder, an alleged ‘human bomb’, was wanted in connection with two bus bomb blasts at Pathankot in Punjab during April and June 1997, in which nine people had died. Ravinder, sister-in-law of the KZF chief Ranjit Singh Neeta, was married to Nirmal Singh Nimma, who was acquitted in the General Vaidya assassination case. Ravinder got involved in terrorist activities after her sister married Neeta in 1990.

On July 6, 2005, a day after the failed terrorist attack on the make-shift Ram temple at Ayodhya in Uttar Pradesh, the Jammu and Kashmir police is working on inputs that the KZF outfit is making attempts to regroup in Jammu, according to Indian Express. Official sources said that many of the KZF activists against whom cases were filed in the courts have been enlarged on bail and they are seeking to regroup. Inspector General of Police (Jammu), S. P. Vaid, while confirming that the KZF was making attempts to regroup said, "We are making efforts that the KZF does not become successful in reviving itself here. Many of the activists were involved in different violence related activities."

Area of Operation and Linkages

While Punjab, Jammu, Delhi are the main areas of operation, the outfit is also reported to have operated from Nepal in the past. For instance, the Delhi Police (DP) claimed to have neutralised a Nepal module of the outfit with the arrest of three cadres on August 24, 2000. While addressing a press conference on that day, Ajai Raj Sharma, the then DP Commissioner, said Neeta, who was in Lahore, had established a powerful base at Bir Ganj in Nepal and that Maan Behanji and Lakhbir Singh were the main organisers of this base. Earlier, in November 1998, Lakhbir Singh, an activist of the KZF, was arrested from a hotel in the Nepalese capital Kathmandu along with 20 kg of RDX and timing devices. On interrogation, he is alleged to have identified three Pakistani embassy officials with whom he had liaised, one of them identified as Asim Saboor, according to an Asiaweek report of April 21, 2000. The bases in Nepal were reportedly set up by the KZF with support from the ISI during the phase of Punjab militancy.

While Pakistan continues to host the KZF and its 'chief', Ranjit Singh Neeta, the outfit is also reported to have activists and sympathisers in Britain, Germany, Canada and some other European countries.

Apart from being linked to the ISI, the KZF has close links with several terrorist groups active in Jammu and Kashmir, including the Hizb-ul-Mujahideen (HM). Explaining such linkages, Sarabjit Singh, the then Punjab Police chief, said on November 14, 1999, that the KZF always had links with Kashmiri terrorists as it comprised Sikhs from the Jammu region.

Daily Excelsior reported on November 15, 2000 that "While the KZF still has much interest in hitting at Punjab, the ISI, intelligence reports say, has prevailed upon it to focus its attention on assignments given to its cadres in Jammu and Kashmir. Fresh and vigorous strikes in Poonch district (where Khalistan Zindabad Force has pockets of influence) and in other areas of the Jammu region, including the city of Jammu, according to the calculations purported to have been made by the ISI, would be more useful to it (ISI)."

The group has, intermittently, attempted to re-group and operationalise its subversive capacities in Punjab, Jammu, Delhi and elsewhere in India. However, a consistent loss of cadres and leadership has led to the KZF being marginalized although it retains its operational capacities.

Incidents and Statements involving Khalistan Zindabad Force: 2016, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2008-2012






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