Senior security official blamed for Lahore attack

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> The preliminary report by the government on the recent attack on the Lankan cricketers has blamed senior police and security officials.

Updated: March 20, 2009 10:04 IST
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The preliminary report by the government investigators into the recent attack on the Sri Lankan cricketer in Lahore has blamed senior police and security officials for the March 3 incident in which six policemen and a driver were killed.

According to Geo television channel, the preliminary investigation report had been sent to the interior ministry for further action.

After the attack in which six Sri Lankan players and their assistant coach were also wounded, several agencies were given the responsibility of probing into the attack that has cast serious doubts over the future of international cricket in Pakistan.

The channel claimed that in the report investigators had said the attack took place because senior police officials posted for VVIP duty with the Sri Lankan team didn't fulfill their responsibilities properly.

The report said that these senior police officers neglected their duties which led to the attack despite Sri Lankans being assured state level security for the tour.

In the report, investigators have also said that around 10 to 12 gunmen were involved in carrying out the deadly attack near the famous Liberty roundabout just 500 metres from the Gaddafi stadium where the Test was being played.

The investigators noted that due to slackness of the police officers posted on VVIP duty none of the attackers could be arrested. They said five persons, said to be accomplices of the gunmen, had been arrested and were being questioned.

The families of the security officials along with the bus driver who were martyred in the attack will be awarded Rs 500,000 each and the officials who were wounded will be given promotion.

The report has said the possibility of a foreign hand in the attack cannot be ruled out.

Interestingly the Pakistan Cricket Board has lodged a protest with the International Cricket Council (ICC) against match referee Chris Broad who alleged police officials had abandoned the match officials during the attack.

Broad had also said that proper security was not provided to the Sri Lankan team and match officials which allowed the incident to take place.

Pakistan's sports minister Pir Aftab Shah Jillani has also told a foreign newspaper that they were clear lapses in the provision of security cover for the visiting players and officials and that the government would looking into this.

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