How significant is Jaish-e-Muhammad in Kashmir today?

1. Early this year, intelligence sources say, Talha Rashid was despatched across the Line of Control as part of a group of around two dozen Jaish — a squad chosen to stage periodic fidayeen operations, to shore up the morale of local jihadists.

2. IN the hours after he learned that a nephew had been shot dead in a remote Kashmir village, Masood Azhar Alvi began writing a strange elegy to violent death: “The martyr’s sins are forgiven when the first drop of his blood falls”, he wrote, “and he is spared the agony of the grave, the terrors of the day of judgment; he is married to seventy two virgins; his family granted God’s mercy.

3. For years now, it has functioned as the hard core of the Kashmir jihad, focussing on dramatic operations like the attacks on Parliament House and the Jammu and Kashmir Assembly in 2001, the Indian diplomatic mission in Mazar-e-Sharif, and the Indian Air Force base in Pathankot last year.

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