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Tribunal slams cops for attack on Lankan team

Press Trust Of India
Apr 25, 2009 at 04:44pm IST

Lahore: A judicial tribunal that probed last month's terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore has concluded that it was caused by "laxity" among police officers guarding the visiting players.

The report of the tribunal headed by Justice Shabbar Raza Rizvi of the Lahore High Court, submitted to the government on Friday said "laxity" on the part of police officers providing security to the team was the "prime cause" for their failure to thwart the attack, official sources told.

Eight persons were killed and over 20 others, including several Sri Lankan players, injured when over a dozen terrorists ambushed the team's motorcade at the busy Liberty traffic roundabout near a stadium here on the third day of the second Test on March 3.

PASSING BUCK? The tribunal started its inquiry on March 24 and recorded the statements of 69 witnesses.

The tribunal's report said police officers had not manned the Sri Lankan team's route to the stadium for the first two days of the Test, sources in the Punjab provincial government said.

Not even a single policeman was deployed on the roofs of buildings near the Liberty roundabout and there was no cordon either.

Officers on duty also did not bother to check the route for three consecutive days, the sources said.

The report also asked the government to implement its recommendations to prevent such attacks in future.

"It is up to the government to take action against those responsible or not," sources quoted the report as saying.

Another report by Additional Inspector General of Police Slahuddin Niazi has already recommended action against Superintendent of Police (VVIP security) Ahsan Younas, SP (Model Town) Raja Abid and SP (Civil Lines) Rai Ijaz for

failing to check the team's route.

The tribunal's findings and recommendations have been sent to federal interior secretary, the Punjab Governor and Chief Minister, and the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board.

The tribunal started its inquiry on March 24 and recorded the statements of 69 witnesses. It also visited the site of the attack twice and examined video footage of the incident from a private TV channel and CCTV cameras of a store.

None of the terrorists involved in the attack has been arrested so far. Punjab province's former police chief Shaukat

Javed, who retired a few days ago, has claimed that all 13

attackers have been identified. PTI MZ RHL

ETB

04251139 DELHI

The report also asked the government to implement its

recommendations to prevent such attacks in future.

"It is up to the government to take action against

those responsible or not," sources quoted the report as

saying.

Another report by Additional Inspector General of

Police Slahuddin Niazi has already recommended action against

Superintendent of Police (VVIP security) Ahsan Younas, SP

(Model Town) Raja Abid and SP (Civil Lines) Rai Ijaz for

failing to check the team's route.

The tribunal's findings and recommendations have been

sent to federal interior secretary, the Punjab Governor and

Chief Minister, and the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket

Board.

The tribunal started its inquiry on March 24 and

recorded the statements of 69 witnesses. It also visited the

site of the attack twice and examined video footage of the

incident from a private TV channel and CCTV cameras of a

store.

None of the terrorists involved in the attack has been

arrested so far. Punjab province's former police chief Shaukat

Javed, who retired a few days ago, has claimed that all 13

attackers have been identified.

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