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Pakistan’s probe team reaches Delhi, set to visit airbase soon

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Pathankot: Security beefed up around Pathankot Indian Air Force (IAF) base on Jan 6, 2016. (Photo: IANS)

New Delhi: Led by Punjab Counter-Terrorism Department Additional Inspector-General Muhammad Tahir Rai, the Joint Investigation Team (JIT) left for India on a special plane from Allama Iqbal International Airport in Lahore.

“The five-member Pakistani investigation team left for New Delhi around 11.45 today,” Muhammad Tariq, an immigration official at the Lahore Airport said. Intelligence Bureau’s Deputy Director-General Lahore Muhammed Azim Arshad, Military Intelligence’s Lieutenant-Colonel Irfan Mirza, Lieutenant-Colonel Tanvir Ahmad of Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and Inspector Shahid Tanveer, a Punjab police officer based in Gujranwala, are the other members of the JIT.

India had blamed JeM militants for the assault on the IAF base in Pathankot in Punjab on 2 January, which triggered two days of gunbattle that left seven Indian security personnel dead.

India plans to provide the Pakistani probe team access to all witnesses in the Pathankot terror attack case but not security personnel from National Security Guard or the BSF. Official sources in New Delhi said on Saturday that India will also press for visit of its probe team to that country for carrying out investigations there.

The sources said the team will not be provided complete access to the Pathankot air force base but to limited areas where Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorists were engaged in an 80-hour gunbattle with security forces. The airbase will be visually barricaded by NIA to prevent any view of its critical areas.

The team will be briefed thoroughly tomorrow at the NIA headquarters here which will include a 90-minute presentation on the investigations carried in the case so far, the sources said. This will be the first time that Pakistani intelligence and police officials are travelling to India to investigate a terror attack.

The witnesses include Punjab Police Superintendent of Police Salwinder Singh, his jeweller friend Rajesh Verma and cook Madan Gopal and 17 injured people. The attack led to the postponement of a scheduled meeting between Foreign Secretaries of Pakistan and India in January in Islamabad. On 18 February, Pakistan had lodged an FIR in connection with the Pathankot terror attack without naming JeM chief Masood Azhar who India has accused of having masterminded the strike.

Credits: Firstpost

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India successfully test fires n-capable Agni-V ballistic missile

The missile was earlier tested successfully in 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016.

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Nirbhay
The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) sources said the Nirbhay missile test was "successful".(Representative image) VOA
  • India successfully tests the Agni-V ballistic missile on Thursday
  • This was the fifth test that missile underwent
  • With this success India is now in ranks with US, UK, China and Russia

India on Thursday successfully test fired its indigenously developed intercontinental surface-to-surface nuclear-capable ballistic missile Agni-V — the most potent and with the longest range in the Agni series – that can reach targets as far as Beijing.

The test took place at the Abdul Kalam Island facility off the Odisha coast. Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman tweeted about its success, congratulating its makers DRDO, the armed forces and the defence industry.

You may also like : Ballistic missile Agni-IV test fired as part of user trial

India has many high tech and powerful missiles to its name. Wikimedia Commons
India has many high tech and powerful missiles to its name. Wikimedia Commons

She said the successful test of the 5,000-km-range missile that can carry a one-tonne warhead, was “a major boost to the defence capabilities of our country”.

“The Made in India canistered missile, having three stages of propulsion, was successfully test fired,” she tweeted.

Developed by the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO), the Agni-V is the most advanced version of the Agni series, part of the Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme that started in the 1960s.

The missile was earlier tested successfully in 2012, 2013, 2015 and 2016.

This was the fifth test of the missile and likely to be its first user trial, though there was no official word on it.

India is developing new technologies everyday to strengthen its defence.
India is developing new technologies everyday to strengthen its defence.

Thursday’s test brings the missile closer to its induction in the tri-service Strategic Forces Command.

The missile has a much longer shelf life, with its container being made of special steel that absorbs the blast of the takeoff.

In the canisterised launch, a gas generator inside ejects the missile up to a height of about 30 metres. A motor is then ignited to fire the missile.

Also Read : Nikki Haley says North Korea Could Face Stronger Sanctions due to its 7th Missile test in 2017 .

With this missile, India joins the super-exclusive club of ICBM (missiles with a range of over 5,000-5,500 km) capable countries of the US, Russia, the UK, France and China. IANS