Agencies pore over Pakistan’s 30 questions

India has begun inter-ministerial and inter-agency consultations on the 30 questions asked by Pakistan in response...

Written by Shubhajit Roy | New Delhi | Published: February 22, 2009 12:31 am

India has begun inter-ministerial and inter-agency consultations on the 30 questions asked by Pakistan in response to the Indian dossier on the Mumbai terror attacks last week. While most of the questions relate to the forensic and crime scene investigations,there are two queries that have raised some concerns. First is the request for the details of Indian nationals who have been arrested in connection with the 26/11 attacks and the second relates to information about the investigations into the Samjhauta Express bombings in 2007. However,contrary to Pakistani media reports,there has not been any mention of the Malegaon investigations.

The set of 30 questions — which were handed over to Indian High Commissioner Satyabrata Paul by Pakistan’s Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir — include requests for the DNA reports and fingerprints of all the 10 terrorists,data from the cellphones,satellite phones and GPS devices used by the attackers,as well as Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) data,voice recordings and radio intercepts. Islamabad has also asked for details of the weapons and ammunition used by the terrorists along with ballistics and explosives reports.

A cluster of questions also pertain to the names and contact details of the lead investigating agency in India. While the Mumbai Police are handling the case in India,it is being handled by the Federal Investigation Agency in Pakistan.

Sources said that discussions with the Mumbai Police have already taken place for preparing responses to Pakistan’s questions. This followed a February 12 meeting that included External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee,Home Minister P Chidambaram and Defence Minister A K Antony. The Home Ministry has also initiated discussions with the Intelligence Bureau (IB) and the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW).

However,India has not yet spelled out any time-frame for responding. The Ministry of External Affairs had,on February 12,said New Delhi will share “whatever it can”. On Tuesday,Pranab Mukherjee had told Parliament that India will respond as and when it is ready.

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