Benazirs murder mystery likely to remain under wraps forever

December 27th, 2008 - 1:34 pm ICT by ANI  

Benazir Bhutto

Islamabad, Dec 27 (ANI): Fears are being expressed that Pakistans former premier Benazir Bhuttos murder would always remain under wraps, as people privy to the proceedings and progress in the investigations say that unravelling of the mystery shrouding the crime could lead to startling revelations, if ever made public, with serious political implications.

The chances of Benazirs assassination remaining unresolved, like other high-profile murder cases in the countrys chequered history, appears to be high, The News reported.

Some of the leads that we have obtained from the entangled evidence, both physical as well as circumstantial, guide us to certain personalities but any disclosures at this stage might cause extremely serious repercussions, said one member of the Joint Investigation Team (JIT).

There is no doubt that we are in possession of highly sensitive information that our investigations have led us to and we have reason to believe that any premature exposure of this information would open up a Pandoras Box that would be difficult to handle.

However, I would say that there have been stages in the course of the investigation, where we felt it was almost impossible to proceed any further, The News quoted the source, as saying.

Certain points have already been widely discussed in the public, and one of these is the elimination of two very important persons whose statements would have been extremely useful for the investigators.

One is the death of Nahid Bhutto, a cousin of the late Benazir Bhutto, in a road accident near Hyderabad on her way to Karachi from Naudero, less than a week after the tragic assassination of the then-PPP chairperson.

Insiders claim while cousin Nahid Bhutto was busy talking to somebody in Australia over telephone from the Naudero house in Larkana after the burial of Benazir Bhutto, she is believed to have touched upon something sensitive, overheard by somebody present there but without her knowledge.

As soon as she realised the presence of the other person, Nahid quickly wrapped up her conversation, saying she would discuss the matter on her arrival in Karachi the next day. She never arrived as intended.

A second hurdle to the probe is the assassination of Khalid Shehanshah, the personal bodyguard of Bhutto and a key eyewitness to the tragedy.

He stayed close to Bhutto wherever she went after her return and was always in the back of the vehicle that Bhutto rode during her election campaign. It will be instructive to recall that his behaviour on the stage the day Bhutto delivered her last speech at Liaquat Bagh had been questioned but the issue was tactfully hushed up.

The investigators believe that he was in the know of important facts concerning the assassination of the 54-year-old leader. His murder was part of a larger scheme to silence anybody who could become a source of vital information that would help resolve the mystery shrouding the assassination, the paper said.

What exactly he knew and why he was eliminated are the questions agitating the minds of people. Some are trying to divert attention from his killing by saying he had connections with the underworld dons, who might have orchestrated his murder.

Another very interesting aspect that surfaced during the investigations by The News was the late-night meeting of the head of an intelligence agency with Bhutto. Reliable sources said the gentleman came to meet Bhutto at around 1:30 am on the night of December 26, 2007 (early hours of Dec 27) and went straight into the meeting, also attended by Rehman Malik, then security adviser to the former premier.

One source privy to the discussions claimed the spy chief categorically told Bhutto not to go to Liaquat Bagh to address the rally. He said credible information had been received that there would be an assassination attempt on her life during the public meeting.

Now that the Pakistan Peoples Party (PPP) is in power, it is intriguing why the government has not made any effort to reinvestigate the case. The government did promise that a UN probe into Benazirs death would be initiated, but there has since been complete silence on the part of the PPP government, baffling many. (ANI)

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