Many many thanks for the ID, Garg ji.
... went through the links you provided; they were real helpful.
Leaves, in tufts of 5-8, lance-like, simple spiny, toothed, leathery, stalkless, pointed, 4.9 cm long, 1.8 cm broad ...
I returned to my pictures ... was glad to see hints of spines at the margin, albeit loosely spaced.
I believe this plant to be B. aristata.
Thanks once again; long pending ID resolved.