NEW DELHI: Tariq Khosa, former director general of Pakistan’s Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) who supervised the Mumbai terror attack probe, has said that it was planned and launched from Pakistani soil. The startling claims by Khosa in the Dawn are significant in the backdrop of the Ufa bilateral statement which included expeditious trial of the case.
Officials in the security establishment echoed Khosa’s revelation ahead of the NSA level talks between the two countries, claiming that the former FIA chief’s version of evidence will help India counter Pakistan’s arguments that vague and insufficient evidence was provided by India in the case. “Khosa’s article gives us a glimpse of the FIA chargesheet in the case which has not been properly argued by the prosecution due to fear of terrorists. This makes it clear that 99 per cent of the overwhelming evidence against the accused persons was in Pakistan and its demand for more evidence from India is not only absurd but seems to be part of its delay tactics,” officials said.
Khosa, after admitting the truth behind the Mumbai conspiracy and subsequent mistakes made by the Pakistani authorities, went a step further and asked the state security apparatus to ensure that the perpetrators and masterminds of the ghastly attack, roaming free in Pakistan, are brought to justice. “The case has lingered on far too long. Dilatory tactics by the defendants, frequent change of trial judges and assassination of the case prosecutor as well as retracting from original testimony by key witnesses have been serious setbacks for the prosecutors,” Khosa said in the article.
Khosa’s 26/11 revelations, which the Indian establishment had all along maintained, establishes Pakistani state and non-state actors’ role in the attack. He said one of the attackers Ajmal Kasab’s place of residence and initial schooling as well as his joining a banned militant organisation were established by the investigators. He added that the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) terrorists involved in the attack were imparted training near Thatta, Sindh, and launched by sea from there. “The training camp was identified and secured by the investigators. The casings of the explosive devices used in Mumbai were recovered from this training camp and duly matched,” said Khosa.
“The trawler used by the terrorists for hijacking an Indian trawler in which they sailed to Mumbai was brought back to harbour, painted and concealed. It was recovered and connected to the accused,” Khosa writes in the Dawn article. Khosa admitted that the engine of the dinghy abandoned by the terrorists near the Mumbai harbour was purchased by LeT terrorists from a Karachi sports shop.