Ministers and officials discuss Pak team visit

India has to agree to the modalities of the Pakistani investigation team coming to India

GN Bureau | January 15, 2016



A top-level internal security meeting was held at the ministry of home affairs today on Pakistani response to the Pathankot terror attack.

The meeting was attended by the director general of the BSF as well as national security advisor Ajit Doval.  India has welcomed the formation of the SIT in Pakistan but the terms and conditions are still not clear.

Union home minister Rajnath Singh met defence minister Manohar Parrikar to discuss the modalities of the Pakistani investigation team coming to India for probe into Pathankot terror attacks.

Senior government officials say the Pakistani proposal to send a special investigation team (SIT) to India for investigations can receive legal cooperation here only if it is investigating a criminal case registered under a Pakistani law. The only other option for India to exchange information with the Pakistani SIT in the absence of a case would be informal and would carry no legal sanctity.

MP and former home secretary RK Singh said that in the absence of any criminal case, the SIT was just like any other “inquiry committee”, which did not have any prosecution powers.

“If no case has been registered by Pakistan regarding the Pathankot attack, the SIT will have no power to investigate; at best, they can come here to inquire. Based on the information gathered, it will not be possible to prosecute anybody in Pakistan. The information cannot be used to send somebody to jail,”. Singh said.

Unconfirmed reports from Pakistan say Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) chief Maulana Masood Azhar, accused of masterminding the Pathankot terror attack, has been detained, but under what sections of law, it is not clear yet.

An official said that Pakistan was yet to take any stringent action against the accused named by India in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack case, though the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) registered a case. As reported by The Hindu earlier, the investigation done by the FIA had 22 glaring gaps.

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