At least 44 people were arrested on Tuesday in a joint operation in Kashmir's Baramulla on charges of undertaking "terror-related activities", The Times of India reported. Around 700 houses in ten localities were searched during the operation conducted by the Indian Army, Border Security Force, Central Reserve Police Force and local police. Pakistan-based militant outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba has reportedly issued a warning to the Station House Officer protesting the arrests.

Defence ministry spokesperson Manish Kumar said the joint forces confiscated petrol bombs, Chinese and Pakistani flags, LeT and Jaish-e-Muhammad letter pads, illegal mobile phones among other items. A local resident said, “An announcement was made about the crackdown and people were asked to stay indoors. The personnel conducted house-to-house searches.”

The mission was reportedly the first of its kind in a decade. Hostilities between India and Pakistan have worsened since the September 18 attack on an Indian Army base in Jammu and Kashmir’s Uri sector. While India believes Pakistan was involved in the attack, Islamabad maintains that there is no evidence to support the accusation. On September 29, the Indian Army had announced that it had carried out “surgical strikes" along the LoC.