LAHORE: The security services have not found any linkages of Tashfeen Malik to any extremist individual or militant group in Pakistan that could motivate her for mass shooting in California, The Nation has learnt. Tashfeen, 27, and her 28-year-old American-born husband, Syed Rizwan Farook, had burst into a year-end party in San Bernardino, California Wednesday afternoon and opened fire on a roomful of Farook’s co-workers, killing 14 and wounding 21. She hailed from Taunsa tehsil in DG Khan district of Punjab and lived for some time in Layyah district but spent much of her life in Saudi Arabia before moving to the US after marrying Farook, whom she had met on a matrimonial service online.

The background inquiries relating to Tashfeen’s family, relatives and other contacts in Pakistan were launched in Layyah and Multan districts immediately after the media frenzy in the western world speculating possible links of the mum of a six-month-old baby girl with some radicals back home. The FBI officials said the shooting incident is being investigated as an act of terrorism. FBI Director James Comey claimed there were indications that the couple had been radicalised, adding they were potentially inspired by foreign terror groups.

Pakistani investigators however have so far failed to find any evidence suggesting that she could have been motivated to commit such act of terror in the US by any individual are group in Pakistan, security agencies’ sources told The Nation. Investigations revealed that Tashfeen had left Pakistan along with her family for Saudi Arabia for good 25 years ago when she was only two-year old. The security officials rejected western media reports claiming that Tashfeen was related to a former provincial minister Ahmed Ali Aulak and that she had studied pharmacy at Bahauddin Zakariya University (BZU) in Multan.

International media reports claimed she returned to Pakistan six or seven years ago to complete in pharmacy from BZU and even claimed an online transcription showing Tashfeen’s marks in pharmacy exams. “We found no evidence that Tashfeen or his immediate family members were related to Ahmed Ali Aulakh. We have also not found any traces of Tashfeen in BZU record,” said the security agencies’ sources. They also rejected assertions that Tashfeen had close ties with Lal Masjid head Maulana Abdul Aziz. “The claim of her having close ties Lal Masjid cleric also appear to be untrue in the light of probe conducted so far,” they added.

A security official said, “The action of the pair (Tashfeen and her husband) appears to be a ‘lone wolf attack’ which is either self-motivated or carried out taking self-inspiration from some radicals. We could not establish any direct or indirect connection of Tashfeen with any extremist individual or group. The only fact that has come out so far is that she did hold a Pakistani passport.” Western media reported that the US investigators believe the female shooter had pledged allegiance to Da’ish (Islamic State) leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in a Facebook post on an alias account. One US official familiar with the investigation claimed Tashfeen had posted on a fake Facebook account just as the attack was going on.

But Pakistani officials believed the pair acted on their own upon being radicalised by terrorist propaganda online and it’s not necessary they had been in contact with ISIS or with any extremist group in Pakistan. “The Tashfeen case appears to be that of self-motivated sleeper cells which require no chain of command or organised militant leadership to execute their self-designed plans. However, this assumption, that what she did was out of her own extremist religious tendencies and completely their (she and her husband’s) own initiative, could only be accepted if investigations in the US find any proof to supporting this idea,” the Pakistan security official said.

The sources also rejected claims made in the international media that the Pakistani investigators had met Tashfeen’s uncle Javed Rabbani who told them that her father fater Haji Gulzar Ahmed Malik had become a hardliner after spending years in Saudi Arabia. However, security agencies’ sources said they had not contacted any person calling himself Javed Rabbani and claiming to be one of the uncles of Tashfeen. They added that Rabbani is in fact a distant relative of Tashfeen’s father with whom he never met in the last several years. Rabbani was not even in the close circle of Haji Gulzar who, according to his relatives, is quite a reserved kind of person.