In a major breakthrough in the Pathankot attack case, the National Investigation Agency(NIA) has identified the four fidayeen who attacked the IAF airbase and two of their Pakistan-based Jaish operators.

A Times of India report reveals the names of the four fidayeen  — Nasir Hussain, Hafiz Abu Bakar,  Abdul Qayum and Umar Farooq. The report also reveals that these attackers’ residence Vehari (Punjab), Gujranwala (Punjab), Sukkur (Sindh) and Sanghar (Sindh) districts in Pakistan.

The NIA has shared this information with the Pakistani Joint Investigation Team (JIT). The names and addresses of the attacker were discovered after their bodies were recovered from the encounter site and according to Sharad Kumar, DG NIA, they are waiting for the JIT to give them a confirmation on the names and get back to the NIA.

A source, speaking to DNA, has said that Pakistan has more than enough evidence that the attackers were affiliated with Jaish and that they should punish them. The source further added that the JIT will investigate into the issue for a few more days – which includes talking to the witnesses – and have also allegedly expressed their satisfaction. The JIT, reported DNA, will require all the evidence  under section 188 of their criminal procedure code (Cr PC) so they can produce it back in their courts; this would empower them to collect information about nationals in their country that are involved in crimes in other countries.

The Pakistan investigative team that has come to India for probing the Pathankot attack. IbnliveThe Pakistan investigative team that has come to India for probing the Pathankot attack. Ibnlive

The Pakistan investigative team that has come to India for probing the Pathankot attack. Ibnlive

Pakistani-based operators, identified as Kashif Jan and Shahid Latif, are allegedly responsible for operations in operations Sailkot and lauching cadres in India respectively, reported TOI.

The report further added that Kashif has been missing since his name came in the investigations and Latif was deported back to Pakistan after having served 10 years in an Indian jail.

The NIA is slated to visit Pakistan to further the Indian side of investigations, hoping to get access to Maulana Masood Azhar and his brother Rauf.

The investigations carried out on Wednesday included the NIA seeking voice samples of Azhar, Rauf, Latif and Kashif and DNA/voice samples of Fidayeen Nasir’s mother, identified as Khayyam Baber, who received calls from her son from Pathankot, said TOI‘s report.

The NIA’s probe into the attacks has eliminated all possibilities of the JIT denying that the attack was planned on their soil and facilitated by Pakistani fidayeen and handlers.

The JIT will examine witnesses which include Gurdaspur SP Salwinder Singh, Rajesh Verma who is Salwinder’s jeweller’s friend Salwinder’s personal cook Madan Gopal, said the DNA report. The witness examinations will be done through NIA officials and not directly by the JIT.

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Pathankot probe: NIA reveals names of four fidayeen attackers, evidence admissible in Pakistan court