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'Awaiting Pak reply to send 26/11 team'

HT Correspondent, PTS  New Delhi, March 01, 2011
First Published: 17:13 IST(1/3/2011) | Last Updated: 02:37 IST(2/3/2011)

India has decided, in-principle, to allow the commission set up by Pakistan to record statements of some witnesses, including the investigating officer of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, but hasn't received a response to its request to send an Indian team to Islamabad, home minister P Chidambaram said on Monday.


The minister said the government was awaiting a reply from Pakistan on its request to send a team to question some suspects in the case before the team from Pakistan comes to India.

He, however, indicated that there was no quid pro quo at the moment, implying that Pakistan's refusal to allow the Indian team would not automatically lead to withdrawal of permission to their team.

"It does not mean one way or the other. We will take a view once we get a final and firm answer," he said.

But as the government waits for Islamabad to speak up on its request to allow a team to question some people there suspected to be involved in the 26/11 Mumbai carnage,  Chidambaram said the document evidence required by Islamabad was being obtained and would be passed on over the next few days. "We just agreed to allow a commission to come to India to record the evidence of the Investigating Officer, the Magistrate, who recorded the statements, and some doctors, who conducted the post mortem. We are awaiting a reply,” he said at a press conference to present the home ministry's monthly report card.

With no word emanating from Pakistan on the request, Home Secretary GK Pillai is expected to flag the issue at the home secretary-level meeting later for this month-end.

The report dwelt on the home minister's initiative to help improve the situation in Jammu & Kashmir.

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