Islamabad, January 30 :

Two police officers have been suspended for beating up media personnel covering last week’s blast at a five star hotel in this Pakistan capital.

The suicide bombing, which killed three people, on January 26 came hours before the Indian High Commission was to host a Republic Day reception.

The swift action by Islamabad Police came following a report by a team that was asked to investigate and submit its report within 24 hours.

The team interviewed 41 witnesses before fixing responsibility on the two officials, Dawn newspaper said. Following the report, Chief Commissioner Khalid Pervez suspended Khalid Rashid, deputy superintendent of police (DSP), and Munir Ahmed, station house officer.

The Indian High Commission held the function as scheduled with High Commissioner Satyabrata Pal declaring that India and Pakistan would fight terrorism “jointly” and that there would be no setback to the ongoing peace dialogue.

India has not sought to connect the blast with the function, one of the many scheduled at the Marriott Hotel, a venue frequented by VIPs and foreigners.

But the blast, connected to the current spate of suicide bomb attacks attributed to militants opposed to the Musharraf regime, prompted the US and Britain to direct their citizens to ‘avoid’ visiting the hotel.