The Indian Army will soon hand over two Pakistani teenagers after the National Investigation Agency on Wednesday gave a clean chit to them in connection with the Uri attack in September last year. The NIA told a court in Jammu that it had no evidence to prosecute schoolboys Faisal Husain Awan and Ahsan Khursheed. The two were suspected of assisting four Jaish-e-Muhammad cadres who attacked an Army base camp in Kashmir’s Uri.
An NIA spokesperson told The Hindu that the boys had crossed over to the Indian side of the Line of Control after a fight with their parents about schoolwork. While Awan is a resident of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir’s Potha Jandgran, Khursheed hails from Muzaffarabad’s Khilayana Khurd near Uri.
Awan and Khursheed, both Class 10 students, were arrested on September 21, three days after the attack that killed 19 Indian soldiers. The boys were first caught by a patrol team of the Border Security Force from a village near Uri. They were later handed over to NIA. The duo was lodged in Jammu’s Kot Bhalwal jail, according to Hindustan Times.
After the arrests, the NIA officials had said that the boys gave varying accounts about their involvement in the attack. In one instance, they claimed to have participated in the attack, while in another Awan identified one of the militants. The two families had claimed innocence from the beginning and had said that the two had strayed across the Line of Control.