Pak probe team heads to Pathankot today, political storm erupts in Delhi

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal also accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi of surrendering to Pakistan by allowing investigators from that country to probe the January terror attack.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi/ Quepem (goa) | Updated: March 29, 2016 8:55 am
The Pakistani team with NIA officers at the agency headquarters in Delhi, Monday. (Express Photo: Tashi Tobgyal) The Pakistani team with NIA officers at the agency headquarters in Delhi, Monday. (Express Photo: Tashi Tobgyal)

As Indian and Pakistani officers met at the National Investigation Agency (NIA) headquarters to take stock of the probe into the Pathankot attack, a political storm erupted Monday with the opposition parties slamming the government for giving the Pakistani team, which includes an ISI officer, “unfettered access” to the airbase. The Pakistani Joint Investigation Team (JIT) is scheduled to visit Pathankot Tuesday.

READ | Pakistan sent Delhi a letter saying evidence will help build case

Headed by Muhammad Tahir Rai, chief of Punjab’s Counter Terrorism Department (CTD), it includes Mohammad Azim Arshad, Lahore’s Deputy Director General, Intelligence Bureau, Lt Col Tanvir Ahmed of ISI, Lt Col Irfan Mirza of Military Intelligence and Shahid Tanveer, Investigating Officer of Gujranwala CTD.

Speaking on the sidelines of the Defexpo in Quepem in Goa, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar denied that his ministry had cleared the Pakistan team’s visit to Pathankot. He said the “crime scene” was under NIA control and it was for the agency to decide who to allow there.

He said the “crime scene” was a “non-sensitive” area and had been completely barricaded, including visually. No defence asset, he said, would be used to facilitate the visit of the Pakistani team.

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“An area where the actual crime took place had been handed over to NIA long back… who will be taken there, who will probe, depends on the decision of the NIA,” Parrikar said.

But leading the opposition charge, the Congress questioned the “unfettered access” given to the Pakistani team and the “red carpet welcome” accorded to it.

“By allowing an official Pakistani team to visit and investigate, the BJP government has, for the first time, distinguished and, therefore, recognised that the Pakistani establishment does not have any role in perpetuating terror in India, more so in the context of the Pathankot terror attack,” Congress communication department head Randeep Surjewala said.

READ | Pathankot air base: Tall screens set up to limit access of Pak JIT team

He questioned the presence of an ISI officer in the Pakistani team. “What is the guarantee that the state actors, who are represented by the Pakistani investigation team in India, will not frame the investigation in favour of non-state actors and make our position untenable? Pakistan has not provided a letter rogatory for the visit of its team,” he said.

In the Delhi assembly, minutes after the presentation of the budget, AAP legislators protested the arrival of the Pakistani team. MLAs including minister Kapil Sharma, Nitin Tyagi, Alka Lamba and Rakhi Birla shouted ‘Pakistan go back’ slogans and held aloft banners and the Tricolour.

READ: Pathankot air base: Ahead of Pak JIT visit, two witnesses ‘missing’ 

Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal targeted the Prime Minister: “We have repeatedly said that Pakistan has been behind terror attacks like 26/11 or bomb blasts in Delhi. What is wrong with the Indian government? For 30 years, India has taken this position. India is just a theatre. The masterminds and actual players are in Pakistan… Officers of the IB, CBI and RAW should have gone to Pakistan instead of their officers coming to India. Hafiz Saeed is not in India, (Syed) Salahuddin is not in India… why is the government on its knees?”

READ | Pathankot attack: Pakistan probe team denied permission to go near air base

Later, Kejriwal also tweeted: “ISI ko bulakar Modi sarkar ne Pak he aage ghutne teke. Modi sarkar ne shaheedon ki shahadat ki saudebaazi ki hai. Bharat ke log yeh katai bardasht nahi karenge (By calling the ISI, the Modi government has gone down on its knees. The Modi government has traded the sacrifices made by martyrs. People of India will not tolerate this).”

Away from the din, at the NIA headquarters, the Pakistani team was given a presentation on the probe so far. After the meeting, NIA Inspector General Sanjeev Kumar Singh said: “A five-member JIT of Pakistan arrived today at NIA headquarters for a meeting/interaction with the investigating team of the Pathankot attack case. They met the DG, NIA, and other officers associated with the investigation. During the interaction, NIA officers gave a detailed presentation on the evidence collected during the course of investigation.”

He said the JIT and NIA teams are interacting under “extant legal procedures” of India and Pakistan. “The JIT will be taken to different locations associated with the Pathankot attack case on March 29. The exercise is aimed at providing evidence to Pakistan JIT so that all those guilty of the Pathankot attack can be prosecuted effectively in Pakistan. Discussions will continue with Pakistan’s JIT,” he said.

India plans to provide the Pakistani team access to all witnesses in the case, but not to personnel from the NSG or BSF. The witnesses include Punjab Superintendent of Police Salwinder Singh, his jeweller friend Rajesh Verma, cook Madan Gopal and 17 injured people.

Sources said that cooperation to the Pakistani team would be based on the principle of reciprocity, hoping that an Indian team would be allowed to travel to Pakistan at a later date.

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  1. S
    shobhit
    Mar 28, 2016 at 12:51 pm
    What about the justice for Dr pankaj !!lt;br/gt;your personal greeds, vote bank politics will let you down to such extent... well expected from a chameleon but difficult to see..!lt;br/gt;SHAME DELHI, SHAME KEJRIWAL, SHAME SHAME..!!
    Reply
    1. S
      shobhit
      Mar 28, 2016 at 1:06 pm
      well expected reply from chameleon party follower...and it was same with Akhlaq and other cases where greedy, opprtunistic AAP leader Mr Kejriwal pla politics and tried to make vote bank.
      Reply
      1. C
        Chander Pal
        Mar 28, 2016 at 2:54 pm
        Kejri is an ultra negative person. Do not know how he is tolerated
        Reply
        1. X
          Xyz
          Mar 28, 2016 at 10:40 pm
          Where are those Shiv Sena THUGS? What are they doing without burning effigy of Modi and Ajit Dowal? Looks like they are providing SOME SELF SERVICE to Mohan Bagawat.
          Reply
          1. M
            Mada.kammanati.Modi
            Mar 28, 2016 at 10:08 pm
            Reminds me of how RAW allowed Sri Lankan intelligence agencies a free run and acces to every thing in Tamil Nadu during the EELAM WAR. Good going INDICS!
            Reply
            1. D
              Dinesh
              Mar 28, 2016 at 3:42 pm
              Kejriwal you are Mother *****
              Reply
              1. N
                Nanjundappa
                Mar 28, 2016 at 5:29 pm
                MODI IS THE TRUE ANTI-NATIONAL! BRAHMINS ARE THE TRUE COMMUNISTS.
                Reply
                1. H
                  Haradhan Mandal
                  Mar 28, 2016 at 2:37 pm
                  That was a question LONG OVER DUE. I am surprised that "Nobody asked". I am surprised that IT took such a long time for someone to raise question?!!!!!! It was like asking DAWOOD IBRAHIM (JI) to come to investigate in Mumbai Blast cases.
                  Reply
                  1. L
                    LOIN.CLOTHS
                    Mar 28, 2016 at 10:04 pm
                    NOW WE ALL KNOW WHO IS A -THE LOIN CLOTH MODI, lt;br/gt;THE THREADS OF LION CLOTH-BRAHMIN BAKTS, THE STS OF LOIN CLOTH-VEDIC CITIZENS,lt;br/gt;THE REINFORCEMENT OF LOIN CLOTH-RSS( LOIN CLOTHS THEMSELVES), AHF-INTERNATIONAL LOIN CLOTHS , ....
                    Reply
                    1. T
                      Traditional.job.of.George.Cruz
                      Mar 28, 2016 at 10:12 pm
                      Look how SHEEPISH THOSE WHO RECEIVE THE STANI TEAM. Imagine what brahmin GEORGE CRUZ would do kneeling down if he were there.
                      Reply
                      1. P
                        pannadai
                        Mar 28, 2016 at 5:27 pm
                        @ Divesh Kumar: Your mother Barat Mata has been raped. Instead of complaining about Kejriwal, don't you think you should condemn stan? You don't do that because stan became your FRIEND AFTER YOUR FATHER MODI'S VISIT?
                        Reply
                        1. s
                          skull.heads
                          Mar 29, 2016 at 1:06 am
                          Modi is MADi. That is inviting ISI agents to India. What sort of a joker he is.
                          Reply
                          1. I
                            IML sood
                            Mar 28, 2016 at 5:24 pm
                            What this joker Kujli knows about foreign policy or foreign affairs.He does not know the problems of common man in Delhi where he is a utter failure is commenting on foreign policy.Better he should shut his mouth as his normal talk is like abuses in which he is expert.For Cong. whose B team Kujli is better not to say anything as the counting of their non existence in India has started.
                            Reply
                            1. A
                              Apte
                              Mar 29, 2016 at 3:10 am
                              Good for Porkistani. Bad for Rapistan. Chanakya scoundrels are fooled for once.
                              Reply
                              1. J
                                Jim
                                Mar 28, 2016 at 12:54 pm
                                What is batlawal's position pin batla house encounter
                                Reply
                                1. L
                                  Lol
                                  Mar 28, 2016 at 1:36 pm
                                  Kejru first decide if u r in side or indian side. Keep on changing side, even stan will get confused n might stop funding u. Lolll
                                  Reply
                                  1. L
                                    Lol
                                    Mar 28, 2016 at 1:33 pm
                                    Lol... kejri will slap his own mother if it will get him some votes.
                                    Reply
                                    1. S
                                      Srividya Jayaraman
                                      Mar 29, 2016 at 9:44 am
                                      When kujili bexomes PM he will also do the same thing what Modi is doing. Guys like You cannot understand international politics.
                                      Reply
                                      1. S
                                        Srividya Jayaraman
                                        Mar 28, 2016 at 2:51 pm
                                        People like you are beggar who will blame those companies and without shame will be the first one to apply for employment
                                        Reply
                                        1. M
                                          MyTake
                                          Mar 29, 2016 at 12:05 am
                                          Modi has been voted to power to lead people and solve problems unlike past leaders who came through back doors (thus lacking required trusts)! Currently Modi is the PM who by the position he holds, got the power to take decisions!
                                          Reply
                                          1. M
                                            MyTake
                                            Mar 28, 2016 at 11:59 pm
                                            stan need to understand they won't get a second chance to solve all outstanding issues. They are getting it because of people's 100% trust on Modi where even detractors are failing. But opportunity for only for limited time only!
                                            Reply
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