NIA questions Punjab SP on Pathankot attack

The agency seeks Interpol Black Notice to identify bodies of terrorists.

January 12, 2016 02:01 am | Updated November 17, 2021 03:16 am IST - New Delhi:

Senior Punjab police officer Salwinder Singh was on Monday >questioned by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in connection with the terror strike at the Pathankot IAF base. The NIA, which took over the case immediately after terrorists struck inside the base during the intervening night of January 1 and 2, had summoned Mr. Singh as he was >allegedly abducted by the terrorists .

Mr. Singh, who is at present a Superintendent of Police rank officer posted as Assistant Commandant of the 75th battalion of Punjab Armed Police after he was removed as SP (headquarters) Gurdaspur, had allegedly given contradictory statements about his kidnapping and sequences of events preceding and succeeding the hostage event, an official said.

His questioning is likely to continue on Tuesday as well, said the official.

The NIA had also summoned his cook Madan Gopal to the headquarters for questioning and if need be the two would be questioned together, a Home Ministry spokesperson said.

The NIA had recorded the statement of the caretaker of the shrine which Mr. Singh said he had visited with Mr. Gopal and his jeweller friend Rajesh Verma, who was left bleeding with a cut below his throat by the terrorists after abducting the other two.

The caretaker, who is related to the cook, had told the sleuths that Mr. Gopal and Mr. Verma had come on the morning of December 31 and again in the evening and he was not aware of the reason for their visit to the shrine twice, an official said.

A 10-member NIA team continuing searches in Punjab has recovered an AK-47 magazine, mobile phone and binoculars from the Pathankot airbase, the spokesperson said.

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