ISLAMABAD -  A seven-member inquiry committee headed by Justice (retd) Aamer Raza Khan Thursday held its first meeting to formally start an inquiry into the ‘leaked’ news story about a national security meeting.

Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan gave an hour-long briefing to the committee at the Punjab House, a spokesman for the interior ministry said.

The minister gave the briefing at the request of the committee and informed the committee about the progress made so far on the issue and the reasons behind the removal of former information minister Pervaiz Rasheed. The ministry spokesperson gave no further details about the briefing.

The government and the military both have termed the story, published in Dawn on October 6, about the meeting of civilian and military leadership “wrong and planted”.

Meanwhile, a security source claimed that some intelligence agencies that have also representation in the inquiry committee want the probe to begin from the Prime Minister Office instead of Dawn journalist Cyril Almeida to determine the source of the ‘fabricated’ and ‘leaked’ story.

The first meeting put to an end the media speculations that Justice (retd) Raza Khan was going to refuse to head the committee due to some personal reasons.

The ministry of interior on November 7 notified the seven-member inquiry committee to probe the matter. The other members of the committee include Punjab Ombudsman Najam Saeed, Secretary Establishment Syed Tahir Shahbaz, Federal Investigation Agency Punjab Director Dr Usman Anwer and one representative each from the Inter-Services Intelligence, the Military Intelligence and Intelligence Bureau.

The committee had been mandated to probe the alleged leaker, determine the motives behind the publication of the story and establish the identity of those who were behind the ‘planted’ story.

Meanwhile, Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rasheed Ahmed Thursday in a letter to the interior minister has shown his serious reservations about the formation of the probe committee.

"It is a handpicked committee in the favour of the current ruling family of Pakistan," he said in the letter.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf has already rejected the formation of the committee.

"With the following setup of the committee, any hope for a just decision cannot be expected and will be regarded as unfair, (un)biased and illegal in the eye of the people of Pakistan,” the poorly drafted letter says. The letter said that the head of the committee had enjoyed strong family relations with the Sharif family. It said that Justice (retd) Aamer was also a candidate for the caretaker chief minister of Punjab from the PML-N. "Also Mr Tahir Shahbaz, who moved from Punjab government to the federal government as CDA chairman and secretary establishment, and one Mr Usman Anwer is a close associate of Mr Shahbaz Sharif," it said.