After breaching all security barriers of VVIP Lounge at the Benazir Bhutto International Airport, a 22-year-old man entered into the most sensitive area of the apron and sneaked into the aircraft of Punjab Chief Minister Mian Shahbaz Sharif, sources in the Airport Security Force (ASF) told ‘The News’ here on Friday.
The ASF, however, cordoned off the aircraft and arrested the young man later identified as Asad Rauf.
Sources, giving details of the incident, said that at around 11:57 a.m. the young man entered into the parking lot of the Benazir Bhutto International Airport in a grey Suzuki Khyber car, bearing registration number (AC-4015-Sindh), and walked towards the Rawal Lounge after parking his car. Sources said that as he reached the main entrance of the Rawal Lounge, he, avoiding the walkthrough gate and scanning machine, pushed away the ASF personnel equipped with weapons and stormed into the apron.
Sources said at that time the pre-flight maintenance of the CM’s aircraft was being carried out for the family of Mian Nawaz Sharif going to Lahore.
“For a while, he stood at the apron and again started running towards the Punjab CM’s aircraft parked there and sneaked into it,” said the official who witnessed the episode. He added that the ASF, in a commando operation, stormed into the aircraft and arrested him.
Sources said that during preliminary questioning, the arrested man refused to disclose his intention, but disclosed his name. Investigators claimed that some disastrous intention could be behind his act. “Nothing was recovered from the nabbed man or from the aircraft after his arrest,” they said adding that a thorough search of the aircraft was conducted after the incident. “The aspect of terrorism or assassination of Mian Nawaz Sharif cannot be ruled out, but nothing can be said for sure before a thorough investigation,” said an investigation officer on condition of anonymity.
Apparently a joint investigation team of police and ASF was investigating the case. However the arrested man was handed over to another agency for investigation.