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ISLAMABAD: Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has asserted that India’s Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) and Afghanistan’s National Directorate of Security (NDS) were involved in Dasu bus tragedy, which claimed lives of nine Chinese and three Pakistanis.
“Afghan soil was used in concocting the plan and the vehicle used was smuggled into Pakistan. The planning and execution link clearly to RAW and NDS nexus,” the foreign minister said while addressing a press conference in Islamabad today (Thursday).
FM Qureshi said, “The nexus cannot bear China and Pakistan’s growing cooperation and increasing Chinese investment in the country,” adding, “Alhamdulillah, they failed in their attempts.”
He lauded the efforts of the investigation team, saying that it was a blind case but Pakistani institutions managed to trace it. “We examined footage of 36 CCTV cameras and the area under the investigation was almost 1,400 kilometres,” he added.
The foreign minister further said the primary target of perpetrators was the Diamer-Bhasha dam site, and not the Dasu hydropower project. “When they could not succeed to target Diamer-Bhasha dam site, they targeted Dasu project,” he added.
FM Qureshi also praised Chinese leadership for showing patience and understanding the situation, saying that the Chinese were satisfied with the investigation and have kept in the loop.
Taking over the presser, DG Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Javed Iqbal said that a thumb and a limb were found at the crime scene which belonged to the suicide bomber.
He said that 14 different characters were involved in the attack and was headed by a person named Tariq who is a member of proscribed Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP). “We have arrested three suspects out of the total 14 characters involved.”
He said that Tariq and another suspect Muawiya were trained in Afghanistan by RAW and NDS to carry out the attack, adding that the suicide bomber Khalid aka Sheikh was an Afghan national.
“The authorities gathered information from across the country in the hunt for the vehicle, Honda Accord, and finally, we found a sticker of ‘Chaman 2 Motors’ on the number plate of the car”, he added.
Iqbal also said the showroom’s owner informed the authorities that he had procured the car seven or six months back — in November 2020. “When we backtracked the car and it emerged that it had been transported from Afghanistan,” he added.
The authorities then found a mobile phone through which they located the first suspect, Hussain. Later, we tracked him and through Hussain, we reached a second suspect, Ayaz, and arrested him from Karachi.
On July 14, at least 13 people – nine Chinese nationals and four Pakistanis – were killed and more than two dozen others wounded when a shuttle bus they were travelling in plunged into a deep ravine after an explosion on board.
The bus was ferrying the Chinese and Pakistani workers to an under-construction tunnel site of the Dasu Hydropower Project in the remote Kohistan district of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa province.