Murder in UP: Is the NIA officer's killing the first link in a terrible chain?

You don’t fire 21 bullets at someone until you truly mean to kill them and leave nothing to chance.

The killing of NIA Deputy Superintendent of Police Mohammed Tanzil in his home town of Bijnor in Uttar Pradesh just a few days after the departure of the Pakistan JIT from Pathankot must be seen as suspicious. Why was he so dramatically eliminated, and what did he know that frightened some people so much that they would go to this extent?

The phrase ‘he was investigating the terrorist attack on the air base’ does not particularly clarify the depth of his involvement.

There is a sinister possibility that the well co-ordinated attack and the targeting of  officer was done to send a message to the National Investigation Agency: we can get to you.

Add to the killing the fact that the wife and child were also targeted as they returned from a wedding, which indicates that the killers meant business and were intent on sending out a very strong signal.

Mohammed Tanzil. Image courtesy: Twitter/ANI

Mohammed Tanzil. Image courtesy: Twitter/ANI

That is why there is the need to investigate this murder with immediacy. Such rage and yet, such meticulous planning could indicate that this is only the first link in a planned series of attacks on our security personnel. In that case, the perpetrators have to be tracked and caught and the effort has to be made an immediate priority. In the interim period, protection to vulnerable individuals in the NIA and other agencies has to be intensified. It is better to over-react than be sorry afterwards.

There are only two other possibilities for the way this brutal scenario has played out. In our country, disputes over land, love, caste and religion, our concept of dishonor and money can also trigger a response of such calculated bloodletting. If Mohammed Tanzil had an enemy locally and there was a dispute and somebody ‘wronged’ was getting even, that has to be scrutinized. This angle cannot be ignored. If there is nothing of the sort, then the Pathankot connection is a strong possibility, and it has national ramifications. It indicates the presence of an organised cell.

The only other relatively absurd possibility is that someone wanted to make the Modi government look bad-- like really baaaad--for having allowed the team from Pakistan to saunter about for five days.

Suffice it to say that the Indian government, Modi aside, has a mountain of evidence and does not have to answer to anyone for a mere courtesy it extended. However, the claim that the invitation to the Pakistan investigating team to visit Pathankot now has blood on its corners puts the government squarely on the backfoot.

In capsule, the claim would be, "See, you guys needlessly invited Pakistan over and now one of the investigating officers has been murdered." Who is responsible? Somebody has to answer.

Coincidence? Only if you believe in such things.

Updated Date: Apr 03, 2016 15:29 PM

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