Pak probe team in Amritsar, to reach Pathankot in bullet-proof SUVs

  • Aseem Bassi, Hindustan Times, Amritsar
  • Updated: Mar 29, 2016 10:47 IST
Members of the Pakistan's Joint Investigation Team formed to probe into the Pathankot airbase attack, seen coming out of National Investigation Agency (NIA) office (Hindustan Times)

Pakistan’s joint investigation team (JIT) on Tuesday landed in Amritsar in a special aircraft and headed to the Pathankot airbase by road almost three months after the terrorist attack on India’s frontline airbase to visit the scene of the 80-hour gunfight.

The probe team is expected to reach the Pathankot airbase by 11 am.

Following inputs from the Ministry of Home Affairs about a possible threat to the Pakistan Joint Investigation Team (JIT) by the Islamic fundamentalist organizations based in Pakistan and their proxies in India, the Punjab Police has made arrangements to provide 25 bulletproof cars to ferry them , ANI reported.

The five-member team was in New Delhi since Sunday and the National Investigation Agency (NIA) has briefed it about the attack and the later inquiry.

Watch | Families of those killed in Pathankot attack demand fair probe

The air force will keep the visitors away from key spots at the strategic base but show them the building where terrorists were holed up and the 300-metre-area in which the troops cordoned them. Seven security personnel and six Pakistani terrorists were killed in the encounter on January 2.

The JIT will also be shown the infiltration points and the terrorists’ route from the border to the airbase.

India has allowed the JIT to talk to the witnesses and the injured, including Punjab superintendent of police Salwinder Singh, his friend Rajesh Verma, and the cook, who claimed that the terrorists had kidnapped them.

The visit might not make a difference to the investigation but Pakistan will succeed in conveying to the international community that it is serious about fighting terrorism.

The bodies of four Pakistani intruders are still inside the local civil hospital, and the team from across might also be told about that.

The security in and around Pathankot district has been beefed up for the safety of the Pakistani team amid different protests that are planned.

The local administration has made all arrangements to receive the JIT amid a protest by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) against the visit.

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