2 cars go missing ahead of 26 Jan; Terror alert sounded

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The alert issued by Delhi Police ahead of Republic Day celebrations. Image Credit: DelhiPolice/Twitter The alert issued by Delhi Police ahead of Republic Day celebrations. Image Credit: DelhiPolice/Twitter

Terror alert has been sounded in the national capital after the driver of one Alto car hired by three unidentified men from Pathankot was found dead on Wednesday. The car and the three men who had hired it are missing as well. Incidentally, a beacon light-topped SUV of a senior IPS officer was stolen in Noida on the same day. That SUV too is yet to be traced.

These two incidents have put the authorities in tizzy ahead of the Republic Day celebrations on January 26, especially in the wake of terror attack on Pathankot air base earlier this month.

According to reports thus far, the driver of the missing Alto car from Pathankot was found dead at the Kalta bridge in Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh.

In a bid to stave-off even a remotest possibility of any untoward incident with just four days to go for Republic Day, Delhi Police issued an alert early on Friday.

“A white colour Alto taxi no. HP 01D 2440 was hired from Pathankot by three unknown people. The driver of the taxi, Vijay Kumar from Gaggal, Kangada (sic) was found dead on 20 Jan 2016 at the Kalta Bridge, Dist. Kangada (sic). The Alto car is missing. Search operations are on. Stay Alert!” Delhi Police shared the information on the micro-blogging site Twitter.

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New Delhi: An NSG commando takes part in a security mock-drill organised at Khan Market as part of the alertness in the view of the forthcoming Republic Day functions in New Delhi on Thursday, Jan 21, 2016. Photo – PTI

Addressing the press after issuing an alert and sharing the pictures of three unidentified men who had purportedly hired the car, Delhi police Commissioner BS Bassi urged people in the city to remain alert, especially at crowded places, and inform police of anything suspicious.

The top cop, however, kept away from disclosing any further details.

Meanwhile, an anti-terror mock drill was conducted by the security agencies on Thursday evening at Khan Market in New Delhi. The purpose was to check the preparedness of the crack teams and QRTs at the time of any eventuality ahead of Republic Day celebrations.

Six gunmen, with alleged links in Pakistan, had attacked the Pathankot air base in Punjab on January 1, 2016 leading to a near three-day counter offensive by the Indian security forces. All six gunmen were eventually neutralised and killed but seven security personnel, including a Lt. Col. rank officer, lost their lives in the operation.

In the related development, more than dozen people with suspected links to terror outfits have been detained by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) since late last night.

The NIA operations, which as per the latest information are still on, were based on the intelligence inputs provided over the people suspected to be sympathetic towards terror syndicate ISIS.