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Indian officials hinder Pakistani investigation team’s Pathankot probe

NEW DELHI: Indian officials are making it difficult for the Pakistani JIT that has been sent to carry out their investigation of the Pathankot airbase incident, ARY News reported.

According to details, the Pakistani investigation team met with Indian authorities at the national Investigation Agency headquarters to exchange ideas about the Pathankot airbase attack. The previous day, the Pakistani investigation team visited Pathankot airbase under strict vigilence but were only granted limited access to the airbase.

Pakistan’s team of investigators were also not allowed to record the statements of the central figures related to the Pathankot incident, including SP Gurdaspur and other injured persons. The Indian media has also started its campaign against the Pakistani team, which could further heighten tensions between both sides.

Indian authorities have asked for permission from Pakistan to send their team to Pakistan to conduct investigation, according to the Indian media.

The team led by AIG Muhammad Tahir Rai of Punjab Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) to investigate Pathankot airbase attack.

The team will review the route taken by militants to reach the airbase. However, Pakistani investigators have been given limited access of the attack site.

The investigation team comprises of Deputy Director Intelligence Bureau Muhammad Azeem Arshad, ISI Lieutenant Colonel Tanvir Ahmad, Military Intelligence Lieutenant Colonel Irfan Mirza and CTD Gujranwala’s Shahid Tanvir.

Six militants had stormed Pathankot airbase in Indian Punjab on January 2 this year, killing seven military personnel.

The workers of Indian opposition parties Congress and Aam Admi party (AAP) protested outside the airbase against the visit of Pakistani probe team. Congress has questioned government s ability to handle the matter highlighting vulnerability to national security exposure.

On Monday, Indian opposition lashed out at Modi for allowing an ISI official to visit the Indian Air Force (IAF) base.

Protests began near Pathankot airbase on Tuesday morning as Pakistan’s Joint Investigation Team (JIT) probing the terror attack on the air base headed to Pathankot town in north Punjab.

Indian Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has said on Monday that the Pakistani team would not have access to the operational area of the airbase, but only the isolated “crime scene”, which has been completely barricaded and fenced.

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