Pathankot Attack Probe: NIA Team to Visit Pakistan

Indian investigators will visit Pakistan to take forward the probe into the terror attack on the strategic IAF base in Pathankot.

Published: 01st April 2016 06:59 PM  |   Last Updated: 01st April 2016 07:06 PM   |  A+A-

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A Security forces jawan guards inside the Pathankot Air Force base after the end of the military operation against militants on Tuesday | PTI

By PTI

NEW DELHI: Indian investigators will visit Pakistan to take forward the probe into the terror attack on the strategic IAF base in Pathankot in the aftermath of Pakistan JIT's visit to India.

Dates for the visit will be be worked out later, Director General of NIA Sharad Kumar told reporters here at the end of five days of discussions with Pakistani Joint Investigation Team (JIT) which returned today.

"We expressed that a team of National Investigation Agency (NIA) could be sent to Pakistan for a probe in that country since conspiracy has been hatched in that country. They welcomed the idea and the dates will be worked out later," he said.

Kumar said NIA presented the JIT with "concrete evidence" against the office bearers of Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) who conspired in the attack and the handlers of the terrorists who facilitated and guided them.

"NIA also sought voice samples of some senior office bearers of JeM ," he said without naming anyone. However, NIA sources said that they had sought voice samples of Jaish chief Maulana Masood Azhar, his brother Abdul Rauf and Khayyam Babbar, mother of one of killed Jaish terrorist identified as Nasir Hussain as he had called her before launching the attack in Pathankot.

 Kumar also said that it had asked for a DNA sample of the mother of the terrorist.

The NIA briefed the JIT on investigations in the case. The terror attack executed by the Jaish on January 2, 2016 in Pathankot left seven security personnel dead. Four terrorists were also killed in the gunbattle.

The Pakistan JIT, headed by Additional Inspector General of Police, Counter Terrorism Department, Muhammad Tahir Rai and also including ISI's Lt Col Tanvir Ahmed, in turn, shared with NIA the results of investigations carried out by them so far in Pakistan.

"The interaction with JIT was held in accordance with terms of reference mutually agreed on the basis of reciprocity. The Pakistan JIT assured us of their full cooperation and promised to execute the LR which has been received by them," he said.

The JIT, which arrived here on March 27, interacted on the Pathankot case with NIA officials which included a visit to the IAF base where they were shown the scene of crime as well as the location from where the terrorists sneaked in and hid.

They also visited the spot where Ikagar Singh's vehicle was snatched, where he was murdered, and the spot from where the terrorists hijacked the SUV of SP Salwinder Singh, Kumar said, adding the route taken by the terrorists was also shown to the JIT.

"These are part of the standard legal procedure of investigation followed in both nations," he said. On JIT's request, the NIA provided certified copies of  postmortem reports, call data record, DNA reports of four terrorists and the seizure memo of articles from the scene of crime.

The Pakistan JIT was given access to 16 witnesses including Salwinder Singh, his cook, Rajesh Verma and some witnesses as per agreed terms of reference and extant legal provisions. "The JIT informed us that they were collecting admissible evidence outside Pakistan under the provision of Section 188 of the CrPC of Pakistan, that will legally enable them to be used in prosecution," he said.

JIT was also requested to verify the various articles seized from the terrorists including arms and ammunition as mentioned in the Letters Rogatory sent earlier to Pakistan.

NIA shared with JIT the identity and the address of the 4 terrorists and requested that the JIT confirm the same.

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