WEB DESK: Tanzil Ahmad, a middle-ranking officer of India’s National Investigation Agency (NIA) involved in investigation of the attack on Pathankot airbase in January, has been murdered. According to official sources in New Delhi, he – along with his wife and two children – was returning from a wedding party when two bike-riding assailants stopped his car near Shahspur town in Utter Pradesh and pumped 21 bullets into his body from a close range.
They also critically wounded his wife but spared the children. He was on leave since April 1, after his liaison duty with the Pakistani five-member visiting joint investigation team (JIT) last month. Who the assailants could be, the India’s official version remains tentative. “Nothing can be ruled out. We are probing all angles, including professional rivalry,” says Inspector General (Bareilly Zone) Vijay Singh Meena.
In fact, there is a kind of abiding tentative positioning that characterises India’s conduct in relation to the Pathankot airbase attack on January 2. It, therefore, keeps changing, both in terms of timeline of the events on the airbase and the credibility of the evidence being collected in support of its version.
Only a day before Tanzil Ahmad’s murder, Salwinder Singh, Superintendent of Police (SP) of Gurdaspur, was subjected to polygraph (lie dictator) test, his second after the one in third week of January which had cleared him. Salwinder, who was ‘kidnapped’ along with his cook by the attackers on the night of the airbase attack, but how and where the inconsistencies in his statements before the Punjab Police and NIA board had earned him suspension from active duty.
The latest that emerges in the wake of visit by the Pakistan’s JIT and its interaction with its counterpart and a fleeting visit to a part of the Pathankot airbase pulls the rug from under India’s feet. The entire episode as played out by New Delhi has the palpability of a cock-and-bull story.
First and foremost, the Indians’ pretense that the attack lasted four days was a lie; it lasted just a few hours. The attackers were taken care of as soon as they broke through the outer cordon of the airbase. But Indian propagandists played it up over the next three days just to garner maximum world media attention to malign Pakistan.
To sustain attention when it would sag ‘fresh gunshots were heard’, and thus even when the song had ended the melody lingered on. Indians also failed to establish that the attackers entered from Pakistan. That night not only the India’s Border Security Force (BSF) personnel fell asleep but the electric monitoring system also did not work, the Pakistan JIT was told when asked how come with so much in place to check unwarranted cross-border movement the six attackers effected entry absolutely unnoticed.
And if that was still not good enough as proof of entry from across the border it was also claimed that the perimeter lights were also not functioning though there was warning of an attack. That the security of military installation is elaborate is a fact that has found its best expression from the fact that the investigators invited from Pakistan were not only denied entry into the main area but its stay in the rather civilian part of the airbase was confined to mere 55 minutes.
Mohammad Tanzil Ahmad was said to be very professional and was reportedly involved in all high-profile cases of terrorism in India. But, on the face of it, what took his life was not his professional competence, but the fact that being part of almost all major NIA operations including the Pathankot airbase incident he knew too much. And if he was professional so were his liquidators who made sure he did not survive, and he did not.
Source: Business Recorder