India on Thursday accused Pakistan of continuing to shelter Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) chief Maulana Masood Azhar, named the number one accused in the Pulwama attack chargesheet filed by the National Investigation agency.
Azhar, who founded JeM in 2000 after he was freed from an Indian prison in exchange for 155 passengers of a hijacked aircraft, and his brothers Abdul Rauf Asghar and Ammar Alvi have been named as the primary accused in the charge sheet.
“The charge sheet has been filed after investigation of a year and half since the attack took place on 14 February 2019. It has been filed to address the act of terrorism and to bring perpetrators of such a heinous crime to justice. Our aim is not to simply issue statements or notifications.
“Jaish e Mohammad had claimed the responsibility of Pulwama attack. The organization and its leadership is in Pakistan. It is regrettable that Masood Azhar, the first accused in the chargesheet, continues to find shelter in Pakistan. Enough evidence has been shared with Pakistan but it continues to evade responsibility,” said ministry of external affairs spokesperson.
New Delhi highlighted how Pakistan has still not acted on the dossiers and evidence shared after the 2008 Mumbai attack.
Forty Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel were killed in the Pulwama attack that brought India and Pakistan to the brink of war.
Officials say that the chargesheet has irrefutable evidence – technical, material and circumstantial – on Pakistan’s role in the attack. It cites the roles of the JeM leadership and the arrested accused in the attack and has details like chats, calls details of terrorists.
Pakistan has rejected the chargesheet filed in the Pulwama attack probe, claiming it to be a ‘mischievous attempt’ to implicate Islamabad for the attack. It said that India has failed to provide credible evidence to support its claim and that it is meant to serve ‘narrow and domestic political interests.’
“At the outset, Pakistan had rejected India’s baseless allegations and expressed readiness to extend cooperation on the basis of any actionable information. India failed to provide any credible evidence for its invective and has instead been using the attack for its malicious propaganda campaign against Pakistan,” read the statement.