From day one, Salwinder Singh (top) has been

under scanner

The officer took along his jeweller friend to verify the authenticity of gems smuggled across

Punjab Superintendent of Police Salwinder Singh, who was said to be abducted by terrorists involved in Pathankot attack, used to get paid in diamonds for every drug consignment smuggled across the border, the National Investigation Agency team has learnt from his interrogation over the last three days.

According to highly placed sources, Singh’s friend Rajesh Verma, who is a jeweller by profession, was a regular at these expeditions just so that he can verify the authenticity of the stones. The fidayeen group slashed Verma’s neck before dumping him on the road. Verma is recuperating in Pathankot hospital. Ministry of home affairs spokesperson had earlier said that Verma would be summoned in New Delhi whenever his “medical condition permits” and if the “situation warrants”. He has been examined by NIA teams in Punjab.

Investigations have also revealed that Madan Gopal who Singh claims to be his cook is his bodyguard and is another regular at such expeditions. Singh’s questioning will
continue tomorrow as well. “There must be solid ground to continue his interrogation for the fourth day,” MHA spokesperson said.

As per sources, Singh will be brought face-to-face with caretaker of Panj Peer Dargah- Somraj. While Singh claims to be a regular at the dargah, Somraj had told reporters that he saw Singh for the first time on December 31. There is pending departmental inquiry against Singh reportedly for his involvement in drug-racket rampant in the area. As per sources Singh’s role was discussed in last two cabinet meetings at length.

Meanwhile, a wireless set of Chinese make was found in the car in which the terrorists travelled to air force base on December 31. Data in the wireless set was deleted. The wireless set is being sent to NTRO (National Technical Research Organisation) to retrieve the deleted data. In another parallel between attacks in Samba and Kathua, the wireless set is similar to the ones recovered from these two sites. The ten-member NIA team, who is camping at Pathankot, has now been able to trace the exact route taken by fidayeen from the point of abduction of Salwinder Singh at Kolian till the base.

NIA teams are collecting CCTV footage on the route taken by terrorists to the base.

NIA teams with Punjab police and local villagers are carrying out searches in nearby villages on the route taken by terrorists for evidence left behind by terrorists such as clothes and electronic devices. Further investigations are on.


Pakistan on Wednesday arrested Jaish-e- Mohammad chief Maulana Masood Azhar, his brother and “several individuals” belonging to his dreaded outfit, which is suspected to have engineered the Pathankot terror attack, and sealed its offices after India demanded action on the group linking it to the fate of Foreign Secretary-level talks. Azhar’s brother Abdul Rehman Rauf has also been arrested, Geo TV said.

While the arrest of several individuals was announced in a press release from the prime minister’s Office, there was no official word on Azhar’s detention. Officials said Azhar, the dreaded terrorist and two other terrorists who were released from an Indian prison in 1999 in exchange for release of 155 passengers of the hijacked Indian Airlines plane, has been taken into protective custody after raids on several JeM offices. Pakistan has also said it’s considering sending a special investigation team to Pathankot as more information would be required to carry forward the process of cooperation with India.

The Pakistani action, which was reviewed at a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, come as the fate of the FS-level talks scheduled for Friday hung in balance with just two days for foreign secretary S Jaishankar to go to Islamabad for talks with his counterpart on resuming the bilateral dialogue process.
Terrorists belonging to the JeM are believed by India to be behind the Pathankot terror attack on January 2 in which seven security personnel were killed. A PMO statement issued after the meeting said it noted with satisfaction that as part of Pakistan’s commitment to eliminate terrorism from its soil and the expressed national resolve not to allow the territory to be used for acts of terrorism anywhere.

It said “considerable progress has been made in the investigations being carried out against terrorist elements reportedly linked to the Pathankot incident.
“Based on initial investigations in Pakistan, and the information provided, several individuals belonging to Jaish-e-Mohammad have been apprehended. The offices of the organisation are also being traced and sealed. Further investigations are underway,” the statement said. http://www.bangaloremirror.com/news/india/Drug-peddlers-paid-Punjab-SP-Salwinder-in-diamonds/articleshow/50566862.cms