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Tehrik-e-Jihad [TEJ]

The Tehrik-e-Jihad, one of the Kashmiri Mujahideen group, was founded in March 1997, with the merger of Ansarul Islam and a faction of Al-Barq (a Kashmiri militant organisation affiliated with the People's Conference of Kashmir). It stands for the right of self-determination for Kashmir, with the aim to join Pakistan. This organisation is the militant front for Abdul Ghani Butt's Muslim Conference in Kashmir, and was headed by Farooq Qureshi. The group consists of Kashmiris, along with some Pakistanis and Afghans. It reportedly has a sizeable number of ex-servicemen of the Pakistan Army.

During the Kargil conflict Tehrik-e-Jihad claimed in Islamabad on 22 May 1999 that its fighters have captured about 500 square kilometers area in Kargil and were holding on to it. Initially, the Tehrik-e-Jihad had stated that its armed mercenaries had taken position on the heights in the Kargil and Drass sectors. Soon, the other major militant outfits announced that they were sending "reinforcements" to the area.

On 23 March 2003 former Chief Commander Hizbul Mujahideen Abdul Majid Dar was gunned down in Sopore by militants who allegedly belonged to an unknown organization, which called itself "Save Kashmir Movement." Dar's murder climaxed about three years of his confrontation with Pakistan-based chief of Hizbul Mujahideen, Syed Salahuddin. In May 2002 Dar and many top Hizb Commanders, who supported him, were expelled at the instance of Jamaat-e-Islami. Dar revived his Tehrik-e-Jihad, which he had merged with the Hizb in 1993 on condition that the organization would represent the entire Kashmiri population i.e. Kashmiri population in PoK, too.



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