NEW YORK - The Pakistani-based militant group, Lashkar-e-Taiba, has expanded its operations against India in Afghanistan to counteract the Indian influence in that war-torn country, The New York Times reported Wednesday, citing intelligence officers and diplomats in Kabul. The report said the militant group is believed responsible for planning or executing three major attacks in Afghanistan in recent months, against the Indian government employees and private workers. Unnamed sources told the Times the group has set up training camps in Afghanistan and continues to track Indian development workers and others as targets for future attacks. The LeTs expansion in Afghanistan has prompted suspicions in Washington and among the NATO allies that it is part of Pakistans game plan to have proxy forces at hand to shape the outcome in Kabul after the American troops begin their withdrawal in July next year. Pakistan has also continued to allow Afghan Taliban leaders and other militant groups fighting the US and NATO forces to base themselves in Pakistan. The intent seems to be retain ties to those who might one day return to power in Afghanistan or exercise influence there, New York Times reported. Its inroads in Afghanistan provide a fresh indication of its growing ambition to confront India even beyond Kashmir, for which Pakistans military and intelligence services created the group as a proxy force decades ago, Times said. The paper quoting, a senior NATO intelligence official said, the Lashkar-e-Taiba is now active in six to eight provinces in Afghanistan, a big leap from hardly any presence five years ago. The indication of Lashkar-e-Taibas presence in Afghanistan came on April 8, when a joint US-Afghan Special Operation force killed nine militants and captured one after a firefight in Nangarhar province in Eastern Afghanistan. All of them were Pakistanis and a concentration of them were LeT, the Times said quoting a senior American military official. The paper said LeT is believed to have orchestrated the Feb 26 car bombing and suicide attack on two guesthouses in the heart of Kabul, frequented by Indians. An attack on a shopping centre and a bank in downtown Kabul in January also suggested Lashkar influence. The groups actions are being interpreted as a direct challenge from Pakistan, the report said, claiming that they provide another indicator of the extent to which Pakistani militants are trying to shape the outcome of the Afghan war. An Afghan official said there is concern that the Pakistani militant group is trying to use Afghanistan as the site for a proxy war with India.