Al Umar Mujahideen was formed in 1989 by Ahmad Zargar, a former member of the Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front. It was named after a Srinagar-based Islamic cleric, Maulvi Umar Farooq, who endorsed the Muslim association of Holy Warriors. Reports have it that Imam Umar Farooq supported the Al-Umar Mujahideen in order to counteract the influence of Pakistan's Hezb-ul-Mujahideen over whom he had no influence because they did not respect his religious authority.
Zargar was arrested in 1992, but he was one of three terrorists released by the Indian Government on December 31, 1999 in exchange for the passengers of a hijacked aircraft.
Al Umar Mujahideen is a fundamentalist, Salafi, Islamic organization. The terrorist organization operates out of the Kashmir valley and provides local guidance to the Jaish-e-Mohammed (Army of Muhammad) Pakistani terrorist organization in Jammu and Kashmir. In June 2002, Indian police reported that al Umar Mujahideen had changed its name and was now operating as Al Medina.
Al Umar Mujahideen's/Al Medina's goal is to terrorize the Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir into submission, and have it merge into Pakistan - the Land of Pure Islam. Right from the very beginning, al Umar Mujahideen has received direction, support, funding, and arms from Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI). As recently as 2000, the ISI appointed Zargar as its Chief Coordinator of attacks on rival political candidates and political parties opposed to the annexation of Kashmir into Pakistan.