India, New Delhi: Yesterday, India issued visas to five members of a Pakistan Joint Investigation Team (JIT), who will arrive here on Sunday to carry forward their probe into the Pathankot air base attack for which New Delhi has blamed Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad. The five member team comprises senior officials from both the Pakistan military intelligence and civil administration and is headed by Chief of Punjab Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) Additional Inspector General of Police Muhammad Tahir Rai.
Other members include Lahore Deputy Director General, Intelligence Bureau, Mohammad Azim Arshad, Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) Lt Col Tanvir Ahmed, Military Intelligence Lt Col Irfan Mirza and Gujjaranwala CTD Investigating Officer Shahid Tanveer. This will be the first time that Pakistani intelligence and police officials are travelling to India to investigate a terror attack. But they will not be given access to the technical area of the airbase, where air assets are kept. The team is expected to examine the weapons used by the terrorists who carried out the assault besides recording the statements of the victims, Pakistan media reports said.
Earlier, Pakistan had constituted a six-member Special Investigation Team (SIT) for the initial probe into the case based on the leads provided by India. India had agreed to allow the Pakistan JIT to visit the Pathankot air base after External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj met with her Pakistani counterpart Sartaj Aziz in Kathmandu on the sidelines of the SAARC ministerial meeting on March 17.