Posted by: informer | December 27, 2008

In the Malegaon net

Mumbai: It’s been a month since their chief Hemant Karkare was killed in the Mumbai attacks. A month in which the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) has busied itself in trying to build a strong case against the accused in the Malegaon blast.

As the backbone of the investigation team, Karkare’s death has hit them hard, but officials say they are pursuing the case with added vigour.

While the search for those who planted the bomb continues, Parambir Singh, Additional Commissioner of Police, ATS, said the case is “building up”, adding that they have “collected strong evidence, both physical and technical. The witness statements also are strengthening our case and we are building a chargesheet.”

According to public prosecutor, Rohini Salian, “On the outer side, we have 180 days to file the chargesheet, but the team wants to give a fitting tribute to its boss and is trying its best to finish it in 90 days. Every evidence, backed with witness statement, is proving to help in understanding the level of involvement in the conspiracy of each of the accused. Everyone has participated at some level.”
At present, there are 11 accused in custody, including a sadhvi, a serving Army official and a godman. The case, at this stage, has some crucial evidence including the bike belonging to Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur which was found at the blast site, witness statements of those who have allegedly seen the accused at various conspiracy meetings.

•Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur (38)

Picked up from Surat, arrested on October 24; now in judicial custody.

Alleged to have attended conspiray meetings, her LML Freedom bike was found at the blast site. After the blasts, she was in a house in Ujjain with Ramji Kalsangra, alleged to have planted the bombs, discussing how to answer investigating officials if questioned about the bike.

•Shivnarayan Kalsangra (36)

Picked up from Indore, arrested on October 24; now in judicial custody.

He is reported to be related to Ramji, who is still absconding. The ATS sought his remand to get details of his meetings with Ramji.

•Shyam Sahu (42)

Picked up from Indore, arrested on October 24; now in judicial custody.

The ATS has a recorded telephone conversation between him and Pragya that occurred immediately after the blast. Because of the MCOCA charges, this can now be a part of the chargesheet.

•Ramesh Upadhyay (58)

Retired Major, picked up from Pune, arrested on October 29; now in judicial custody.

The working president for Pune-based Abhinav Bharat, the ATS claims Upadhyay participated in conspiracy meetings and was also instrumental in offering logistical help through his transport business. He is known to have been moved between states, and is reported to have a close association with Pragya.

•Sameer Kulkarni (39)

Picked up from Bhopal, arrested on October 29; now in judicial custody.

The media publicist for the Bhopal branch of Abhinav Bharat, Kulkarni is alleged to have spilled the beans on the involvement of a serving officer, and also reported to be involved in financial transactions. An SMS sent by the serving officer immediately after the blast asked him to spread out and escape.

•Ajay Rahirkar (39)

Picked up from Pune, arrested on November 3; now in judicial custody.

The treasurer for Abhinav Bharat, he is alleged to have managed the finances and also given money to source weapons. A a 9 mm revolver, and 196 live cartridges were recovered from his Pune residence.

•Rakesh Dhawade (42)

Picked up from Pune, arrested on November 3; now in judicial custody.

An antique arms collector, he is alleged to have arranged training and logistics for some of the accused in the earlier four Terror blasts. His association with the Abhinav Bharat members was established through evidence in court.

•Jagdish Mhatre (40)

Picked up from Mumbai, arrested on November 3; now in judicial custody.

The ATS recovered two imported firearms with 15 live cartridges from Dombivali resident Mhatre. He is alleged to have taken cash for procuring weapons from Dhawade.

•Lt Col Prasad Purohit (36)

Was sent from Pachmarhi to Mumbai by the Army, arrested on November 5; now in judicial custody.

ATS alleges that “he played a key role” in the conspiracy, was one of the founder members of Abhinav Bharat and sourced the RDX for the blast. He is reported to be a close associate of Pragya, Kulkarni, Updhyay and Rahirkar. He is alleged to have sourced weapons using fake documents.

•Dayanand Pandey

Picked up from Kanpur, arrested on November 14; now in judicial custody.

Pandey, a self styled priest, is accused of having attended meetings held in Bhopal, Pune and Faridabad and even Kashmir prior to the September 29 Malegaon blast, and also played a key role in making the bomb. He is alleged to have used the issue of atrocities against Kashmiri Pandits to indoctrinate the group.

•Sudhakar Chaturvedi (37)

Was arrested by the local police from Matunga on November 4, and was taken by ATS on December 3.

An active Abhinav Bharat member, he is reported to have attended some important meetings with the other accused. Was helped by Purohit to procure a fake identity card for the artillery unit at Nashik. He has also said Purohit gave him a revolver.

source: http://www.indianexpress.com/news/in-the-malegaon-net/403379/1

“JD(U) MP in the Rajya Sabha, Shivanand Tiwary, who too had backed Antulay, sounded yet another discordant note for the NDA and demanded the removal of acting ATS chief K P Raghuvanshi raising questions over his association with Malegaon blast accused Lt Col Srikant Purohit.

Though senior NDA leaders chose not to attach much importance to these statements, they nevertheless underline the growing tension in the alliance.

Tiwary alleged that Raghuvanshi as ATS chief — before Karkare — had started the probe into the Malegaon blast with the presumption that it was orchestrated by Muslims. He also charged that Raghuvanshi had invited Purohit in 2005 at the ATS headquarters. “Purohit today is in jail for the Malegaon blast. It is surprising that the same officer has been made ATS chief. He should be removed immediately for an impartial probe,” Tiwary said.

Posted by: informer | December 25, 2008

The monster in the mirror

Arundhati Roy

Arundhati Roy

The Mumbai attacks have been dubbed ‘India’s 9/11’, and there are calls for a 9/11-style response, including an attack on Pakistan. Instead, the country must fight terrorism with justice, or face civil war

We’ve forfeited the rights to our own tragedies. As the carnage in Mumbai raged on, day after horrible day, our 24-hour news channels informed us that we were watching “India’s 9/11”. Like actors in a Bollywood rip-off of an old Hollywood film, we’re expected to play our parts and say our lines, even though we know it’s all been said and done before.

As tension in the region builds, US Senator John McCain has warned Pakistan that if it didn’t act fast to arrest the “Bad Guys” he had personal information that India would launch air strikes on “terrorist camps” in Pakistan and that Washington could do nothing because Mumbai was India’s 9/11.

But November isn’t September, 2008 isn’t 2001, Pakistan isn’t Afghanistan and India isn’t America. So perhaps we should reclaim our tragedy and pick through the debris with our own brains and our own broken hearts so that we can arrive at our own conclusions.

It’s odd how in the last week of November thousands of people in Kashmir supervised by thousands of Indian troops lined up to cast their vote, while the richest quarters of India’s richest city ended up looking like war-torn Kupwara – one of Kashmir’s most ravaged districts.

The Mumbai attacks are only the most recent of a spate of terrorist attacks on Indian towns and cities this year. Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Delhi, Guwahati, Jaipur and Malegaon have all seen serial bomb blasts in which hundreds of ordinary people have been killed and wounded. If the police are right about the people they have arrested as suspects, both Hindu and Muslim, all Indian nationals, it obviously indicates that something’s going very badly wrong in this country.

If you were watching television you may not have heard that ordinary people too died in Mumbai. They were mowed down in a busy railway station and a public hospital. The terrorists did not distinguish between poor and rich. They killed both with equal cold-bloodedness. The Indian media, however, was transfixed by the rising tide of horror that breached the glittering barricades of India Shining and spread its stench in the marbled lobbies and crystal ballrooms of two incredibly luxurious hotels and a small Jewish centre.

We’re told one of these hotels is an icon of the city of Mumbai. That’s absolutely true. It’s an icon of the easy, obscene injustice that ordinary Indians endure every day. On a day when the newspapers were full of moving obituaries by beautiful people about the hotel rooms they had stayed in, the gourmet restaurants they loved (ironically one was called Kandahar), and the staff who served them, a small box on the top left-hand corner in the inner pages of a national newspaper (sponsored by a pizza company I think) said “Hungry, kya?” (Hungry eh?). It then, with the best of intentions I’m sure, informed its readers that on the international hunger index, India ranked below Sudan and Somalia. But of course this isn’t that war. That one’s still being fought in the Dalit bastis of our villages, on the banks of the Narmada and the Koel Karo rivers; in the rubber estate in Chengara; in the villages of Nandigram, Singur, Chattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orissa, Lalgarh in West Bengal and the slums and shantytowns of our gigantic cities.

That war isn’t on TV. Yet. So maybe, like everyone else, we should deal with the one that is.

There is a fierce, unforgiving fault-line that runs through the contemporary discourse on terrorism. On one side (let’s call it Side A) are those who see terrorism, especially “Islamist” terrorism, as a hateful, insane scourge that spins on its own axis, in its own orbit and has nothing to do with the world around it, nothing to do with history, geography or economics. Therefore, Side A says, to try and place it in a political context, or even try to understand it, amounts to justifying it and is a crime in itself.

Side B believes that though nothing can ever excuse or justify terrorism, it exists in a particular time, place and political context, and to refuse to see that will only aggravate the problem and put more and more people in harm’s way. Which is a crime in itself.

The sayings of Hafiz Saeed, who founded the Lashkar-e-Taiba (Army of the Pure) in 1990 and who belongs to the hardline Salafi tradition of Islam, certainly bolsters the case of Side A. Hafiz Saeed approves of suicide bombing, hates Jews, Shias and Democracy and believes that jihad should be waged until Islam, his Islam, rules the world. Among the things he said are: “There cannot be any peace while India remains intact. Cut them, cut them so much that they kneel before you and ask for mercy.”

And: “India has shown us this path. We would like to give India a tit-for-tat response and reciprocate in the same way by killing the Hindus, just like it is killing the Muslims in Kashmir.”

But where would Side A accommodate the sayings of Babu Bajrangi of Ahmedabad, India, who sees himself as a democrat, not a terrorist? He was one of the major lynchpins of the 2002 Gujarat genocide and has said (on camera): “We didn’t spare a single Muslim shop, we set everything on fire … we hacked, burned, set on fire … we believe in setting them on fire because these bastards don’t want to be cremated, they’re afraid of it … I have just one last wish … let me be sentenced to death … I don’t care if I’m hanged … just give me two days before my hanging and I will go and have a field day in Juhapura where seven or eight lakhs [seven or eight hundred thousand] of these people stay … I will finish them off … let a few more of them die … at least 25,000 to 50,000 should die.”

And where, in Side A’s scheme of things, would we place the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh bible, We, or, Our Nationhood Defined by MS Golwalkar, who became head of the RSS in 1944. It says: “Ever since that evil day, when Moslems first landed in Hindustan, right up to the present moment, the Hindu Nation has been gallantly fighting on to take on these despoilers. The Race Spirit has been awakening.”
Or: “To keep up the purity of its race and culture, Germany shocked the world by her purging the country of the Semitic races – the Jews. Race pride at its highest has been manifested here … a good lesson for us in Hindustan to learn and profit by.”

(Of course Muslims are not the only people in the gun sights of the Hindu right. Dalits have been consistently targeted. Recently in Kandhamal in Orissa, Christians were the target of two and a half months of violence which left more than 40 dead. Forty thousand people have been driven from their homes, half of who now live in refugee camps.)

All these years Hafiz Saeed has lived the life of a respectable man in Lahore as the head of the Jamaat-ud Daawa, which many believe is a front organization for the Lashkar-e-Taiba. He continues to recruit young boys for his own bigoted jehad with his twisted, fiery sermons. On December 11 the UN imposed sanctions on the Jammat-ud-Daawa. The Pakistani government succumbed to international pressure and put Hafiz Saeed under house arrest. Babu Bajrangi, however, is out on bail and lives the life of a respectable man in Gujarat. A couple of years after the genocide he left the VHP to join the Shiv Sena. Narendra Modi, Bajrangi’s former mentor, is still the chief minister of Gujarat. So the man who presided over the Gujarat genocide was re-elected twice, and is deeply respected by India’s biggest corporate houses, Reliance and Tata.

Suhel Seth, a TV impresario and corporate spokesperson, recently said: “Modi is God.” The policemen who supervised and sometimes even assisted the rampaging Hindu mobs in Gujarat have been rewarded and promoted. The RSS has 45,000 branches, its own range of charities and 7 million volunteers preaching its doctrine of hate across India. They include Narendra Modi, but also former prime minister AB Vajpayee, current leader of the opposition LK Advani, and a host of other senior politicians, bureaucrats and police and intelligence officers.

If that’s not enough to complicate our picture of secular democracy, we should place on record that there are plenty of Muslim organisations within India preaching their own narrow bigotry.

So, on balance, if I had to choose between Side A and Side B, I’d pick Side B. We need context. Always.

In this nuclear subcontinent that context is partition. The Radcliffe Line, which separated India and Pakistan and tore through states, districts, villages, fields, communities, water systems, homes and families, was drawn virtually overnight. It was Britain’s final, parting kick to us. Partition triggered the massacre of more than a million people and the largest migration of a human population in contemporary history. Eight million people, Hindus fleeing the new Pakistan, Muslims fleeing the new kind of India left their homes with nothing but the clothes on their backs.

Each of those people carries and passes down a story of unimaginable pain, hate, horror but yearning too. That wound, those torn but still unsevered muscles, that blood and those splintered bones still lock us together in a close embrace of hatred, terrifying familiarity but also love. It has left Kashmir trapped in a nightmare from which it can’t seem to emerge, a nightmare that has claimed more than 60,000 lives. Pakistan, the Land of the Pure, became an Islamic Republic, and then, very quickly a corrupt, violent military state, openly intolerant of other faiths. India on the other hand declared herself an inclusive, secular democracy. It was a magnificent undertaking, but Babu Bajrangi’s predecessors had been hard at work since the 1920s, dripping poison into India’s bloodstream, undermining that idea of India even before it was born.

By 1990 they were ready to make a bid for power. In 1992 Hindu mobs exhorted by LK Advani stormed the Babri Masjid and demolished it. By 1998 the BJP was in power at the centre. The US war on terror put the wind in their sails. It allowed them to do exactly as they pleased, even to commit genocide and then present their fascism as a legitimate form of chaotic democracy. This happened at a time when India had opened its huge market to international finance and it was in the interests of international corporations and the media houses they owned to project it as a country that could do no wrong. That gave Hindu nationalists all the impetus and the impunity they needed.

This, then, is the larger historical context of terrorism in the subcontinent and of the Mumbai attacks. It shouldn’t surprise us that Hafiz Saeed of the Lashkar-e-Taiba is from Shimla (India) and LK Advani of the Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh is from Sindh (Pakistan).

In much the same way as it did after the 2001 parliament attack, the 2002 burning of the Sabarmati Express and the 2007 bombing of the Samjhauta Express, the government of India announced that it has “incontrovertible” evidence that the Lashkar-e-Taiba backed by Pakistan’s ISI was behind the Mumbai strikes. The Lashkar has denied involvement, but remains the prime accused. According to the police and intelligence agencies the Lashkar operates in India through an organisation called the Indian Mujahideen. Two Indian nationals, Sheikh Mukhtar Ahmed, a Special Police Officer working for the Jammu and Kashmir police, and Tausif Rehman, a resident of Kolkata in West Bengal, have been arrested in connection with the Mumbai attacks.

So already the neat accusation against Pakistan is getting a little messy. Almost always, when these stories unspool, they reveal a complicated global network of foot soldiers, trainers, recruiters, middlemen and undercover intelligence and counter-intelligence operatives working not just on both sides of the India-Pakistan border, but in several countries simultaneously. In today’s world, trying to pin down the provenance of a terrorist strike and isolate it within the borders of a single nation state is very much like trying to pin down the provenance of corporate money. It’s almost impossible.

In circumstances like these, air strikes to “take out” terrorist camps may take out the camps, but certainly will not “take out” the terrorists. Neither will war. (Also, in our bid for the moral high ground, let’s try not to forget that the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, the LTTE of neighbouring Sri Lanka, one of the world’s most deadly terrorist groups, were trained by the Indian army.)

Thanks largely to the part it was forced to play as America’s ally first in its war in support of the Afghan Islamists and then in its war against them, Pakistan, whose territory is reeling under these contradictions, is careening towards civil war. As recruiting agents for America’s jihad against the Soviet Union, it was the job of the Pakistan army and the ISI to nurture and channel funds to Islamic fundamentalist organizations. Having wired up these Frankensteins and released them into the world, the US expected it could rein them in like pet mastiffs whenever it wanted to.

Certainly it did not expect them to come calling in heart of the Homeland on September 11. So once again, Afghanistan had to be violently remade. Now the debris of a re-ravaged Afghanistan has washed up on Pakistan’s borders. Nobody, least of all the Pakistan government, denies that it is presiding over a country that is threatening to implode. The terrorist training camps, the fire-breathing mullahs and the maniacs who believe that Islam will, or should, rule the world is mostly the detritus of two Afghan wars. Their ire rains down on the Pakistan government and Pakistani civilians as much, if not more than it does on India.

If at this point India decides to go to war perhaps the descent of the whole region into chaos will be complete. The debris of a bankrupt, destroyed Pakistan will wash up on India’s shores, endangering us as never before. If Pakistan collapses, we can look forward to having millions of “non-state actors” with an arsenal of nuclear weapons at their disposal as neighbours. It’s hard to understand why those who steer India’s ship are so keen to replicate Pakistan’s mistakes and call damnation upon this country by inviting the United States to further meddle clumsily and dangerously in our extremely complicated affairs. A superpower never has allies. It only has agents.

On the plus side, the advantage of going to war is that it’s the best way for India to avoid facing up to the serious trouble building on our home front. The Mumbai attacks were broadcast live (and exclusive!) on all or most of our 67 24-hour news channels and god knows how many international ones. TV anchors in their studios and journalists at “ground zero” kept up an endless stream of excited commentary. Over three days and three nights we watched in disbelief as a small group of very young men armed with guns and gadgets exposed the powerlessness of the police, the elite National Security Guard and the marine commandos of this supposedly mighty, nuclear-powered nation.

While they did this they indiscriminately massacred unarmed people, in railway stations, hospitals and luxury hotels, unmindful of their class, caste, religion or nationality. (Part of the helplessness of the security forces had to do with having to worry about hostages. In other situations, in Kashmir for example, their tactics are not so sensitive. Whole buildings are blown up. Human shields are used. The U.S and Israeli armies don’t hesitate to send cruise missiles into buildings and drop daisy cutters on wedding parties in Palestine, Iraq and Afghanistan.) But this was different. And it was on TV.

The boy-terrorists’ nonchalant willingness to kill – and be killed – mesmerised their international audience. They delivered something different from the usual diet of suicide bombings and missile attacks that people have grown inured to on the news. Here was something new. Die Hard 25. The gruesome performance went on and on. TV ratings soared. Ask any television magnate or corporate advertiser who measures broadcast time in seconds, not minutes, what that’s worth.

Eventually the killers died and died hard, all but one. (Perhaps, in the chaos, some escaped. We may never know.) Throughout the standoff the terrorists made no demands and expressed no desire to negotiate. Their purpose was to kill people and inflict as much damage as they could before they were killed themselves. They left us completely bewildered. When we say “nothing can justify terrorism”, what most of us mean is that nothing can justify the taking of human life. We say this because we respect life, because we think it’s precious. So what are we to make of those who care nothing for life, not even their own? The truth is that we have no idea what to make of them, because we can sense that even before they’ve died, they’ve journeyed to another world where we cannot reach them.

One TV channel (India TV) broadcast a phone conversation with one of the attackers, who called himself Imran Babar. I cannot vouch for the veracity of the conversation, but the things he talked about were the things contained in the “terror emails” that were sent out before several other bomb attacks in India. Things we don’t want to talk about any more: the demolition of the Babri Masjid in 1992, the genocidal slaughter of Muslims in Gujarat in 2002, the brutal repression in Kashmir. “You’re surrounded,” the anchor told him. “You are definitely going to die. Why don’t you surrender?”

“We die every day,” he replied in a strange, mechanical way. “It’s better to live one day as a lion and then die this way.” He didn’t seem to want to change the world. He just seemed to want to take it down with him.

If the men were indeed members of the Lashkar-e-Taiba, why didn’t it matter to them that a large number of their victims were Muslim, or that their action was likely to result in a severe backlash against the Muslim community in India whose rights they claim to be fighting for? Terrorism is a heartless ideology, and like most ideologies that have their eye on the Big Picture, individuals don’t figure in their calculations except as collateral damage. It has always been a part of and often even the aim of terrorist strategy to exacerbate a bad situation in order to expose hidden faultlines. The blood of “martyrs” irrigates terrorism. Hindu terrorists need dead Hindus, Communist terrorists need dead proletarians, Islamist terrorists need dead Muslims. The dead become the demonstration, the proof of victimhood, which is central to the project. A single act of terrorism is not in itself meant to achieve military victory; at best it is meant to be a catalyst that triggers something else, something much larger than itself, a tectonic shift, a realignment. The act itself is theatre, spectacle and symbolism, and today, the stage on which it pirouettes and performs its acts of bestiality is Live TV. Even as the attack was being condemned by TV anchors, the effectiveness of the terror strikes were being magnified a thousandfold by TV broadcasts.

Through the endless hours of analysis and the endless op-ed essays, in India at least there has been very little mention of the elephants in the room: Kashmir, Gujarat and the demolition of the Babri Masjid. Instead we had retired diplomats and strategic experts debate the pros and cons of a war against Pakistan. We had the rich threatening not to pay their taxes unless their security was guaranteed (is it alright for the poor to remain unprotected?). We had people suggest that the government step down and each state in India be handed over to a separate corporation. We had the death of former prime minster VP Singh, the hero of Dalits and lower castes and villain of Upper caste Hindus pass without a mention.

We had Suketu Mehta, author of Maximum City and co-writer of the Bollywood film Mission Kashmir, give us his version of George Bush’s famous “Why they hate us” speech. His analysis of why religious bigots, both Hindu and Muslim hate Mumbai: “Perhaps because Mumbai stands for lucre, profane dreams and an indiscriminate openness.” His prescription: “The best answer to the terrorists is to dream bigger, make even more money, and visit Mumbai more than ever.” Didn’t George Bush ask Americans to go out and shop after 9/11? Ah yes. 9/11, the day we can’t seem to get away from.

Though one chapter of horror in Mumbai has ended, another might have just begun. Day after day, a powerful, vociferous section of the Indian elite, goaded by marauding TV anchors who make Fox News look almost radical and leftwing, have taken to mindlessly attacking politicians, all politicians, glorifying the police and the army and virtually asking for a police state. It isn’t surprising that those who have grown plump on the pickings of democracy (such as it is) should now be calling for a police state. The era of “pickings” is long gone. We’re now in the era of Grabbing by Force, and democracy has a terrible habit of getting in the way.

Dangerous, stupid television flashcards like the Police are Good Politicians are Bad/Chief Executives are Good Chief Ministers are Bad/Army is Good Government is Bad/ India is Good Pakistan is Bad are being bandied about by TV channels that have already whipped their viewers into a state of almost uncontrollable hysteria.

Tragically, this regression into intellectual infancy comes at a time when people in India were beginning to see that in the business of terrorism, victims and perpetrators sometimes exchange roles. It’s an understanding that the people of Kashmir, given their dreadful experiences of the last 20 years, have honed to an exquisite art. On the mainland we’re still learning. (If Kashmir won’t willingly integrate into India, it’s beginning to look as though India will integrate/disintegrate into Kashmir.)

It was after the 2001 parliament attack that the first serious questions began to be raised. A campaign by a group of lawyers and activists exposed how innocent people had been framed by the police and the press, how evidence was fabricated, how witnesses lied, how due process had been criminally violated at every stage of the investigation. Eventually the courts acquitted two out of the four accused, including SAR Geelani, the man whom the police claimed was the mastermind of the operation. A third, Showkat Guru, was acquitted of all the charges brought against him but was then convicted for a fresh, comparatively minor offence. The supreme court upheld the death sentence of another of the accused, Mohammad Afzal. In its judgment the court acknowledged there was no proof that Mohammed Afzal belonged to any terrorist group, but went on to say, quite shockingly, “The collective conscience of the society will only be satisfied if capital punishment is awarded to the offender.” Even today we don’t really know who the terrorists that attacked the Indian parliament were and who they worked for.

More recently, on September 19 this year, we had the controversial “encounter” at Batla House in Jamia Nagar, Delhi, where the Special Cell of the Delhi police gunned down two Muslim students in their rented flat under seriously questionable circumstances, claiming that they were responsible for serial bombings in Delhi, Jaipur and Ahmedabad in 2008. An assistant commissioner of Police, Mohan Chand Sharma, who played a key role in the parliament attack investigation, lost his life as well. He was one of India’s many “encounter specialists” known and rewarded for having summarily executed several “terrorists”. There was an outcry against the Special Cell from a spectrum of people, ranging from eyewitnesses in the local community to senior Congress Party leaders, students, journalists, lawyers, academics and activists all of whom demanded a judicial inquiry into the incident. In response, the BJP and LK Advani lauded Mohan Chand Sharma as a “Braveheart” and launched a concerted campaign in which they targeted those who had dared to question the integrity of the police, saying it was “suicidal” and calling them “anti-national”. Of course there has been no inquiry.

Only days after the Batla House event, another story about “terrorists” surfaced in the news. In a report submitted to a sessions court, the CBI said that a team from Delhi’s Special Cell (the same team that led the Batla House encounter, including Mohan Chand Sharma) had abducted two innocent men, Irshad Ali and Moarif Qamar, in December 2005, planted 2kg of RDX and two pistols on them and then arrested them as “terrorists” who belonged to Al Badr (which operates out of Kashmir). Ali and Qamar who have spent years in jail, are only two examples out of hundreds of Muslims who have been similarly jailed, tortured and even killed on false charges.

This pattern changed in October 2008 when Maharashtra’s Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) that was investigating the September 2008 Malegaon blasts arrested a Hindu preacher Sadhvi Pragya, a self-styled God man Swami Dayanand Pande and Lt Col Purohit, a serving officer of the Indian Army. All the arrested belong to Hindu Nationalist organizations including a Hindu Supremacist group called Abhinav Bharat. The Shiv Sena, the BJP and the RSS condemned the Maharashtra ATS, and vilified its chief, Hemant Karkare, claiming he was part of a political conspiracy and declaring that “Hindus could not be terrorists”. LK Advani changed his mind about his policy on the police and made rabble rousing speeches to huge gatherings in which he denounced the ATS for daring to cast aspersions on holy men and women.

On the November 25 newspapers reported that the ATS was investigating the high profile VHP Chief Pravin Togadia’s possible role in the Malegaon blasts. The next day, in an extraordinary twist of fate, Hemant Karkare was killed in the Mumbai Attacks. The chances are that the new chief whoever he is, will find it hard to withstand the political pressure that is bound to be brought on him over the Malegaon investigation.

While the Sangh Parivar does not seem to have come to a final decision over whether or not it is anti-national and suicidal to question the police, Arnab Goswami, anchorperson of Times Now television, has stepped up to the plate. He has taken to naming, demonising and openly heckling people who have dared to question the integrity of the police and armed forces. My name and the name of the well-known lawyer Prashant Bhushan have come up several times. At one point, while interviewing a former police officer, Arnab Goswami turned to camera: “Arundhati Roy and Prashant Bhushan,” he said, “I hope you are watching this. We think you are disgusting.” For a TV anchor to do this in an atmosphere as charged and as frenzied as the one that prevails today, amounts to incitement as well as threat, and would probably in different circumstances have cost a journalist his or her job.

So according to a man aspiring to be the next prime minister of India, and another who is the public face of a mainstream TV channel, citizens have no right to raise questions about the police. This in a country with a shadowy history of suspicious terror attacks, murky investigations, and fake “encounters”. This in a country that boasts of the highest number of custodial deaths in the world and yet refuses to ratify the International Covenant on Torture. A country where the ones who make it to torture chambers are the lucky ones because at least they’ve escaped being “encountered” by our Encounter Specialists. A country where the line between the Underworld and the Encounter Specialists virtually does not exist.

How should those of us whose hearts have been sickened by the knowledge of all of this view the Mumbai attacks, and what are we to do about them? There are those who point out that US strategy has been successful inasmuch as the United States has not suffered a major attack on its home ground since 9/11. However, some would say that what America is suffering now is far worse. If the idea behind the 9/11 terror attacks was to goad America into showing its true colors, what greater success could the terrorists have asked for? The US army is bogged down in two unwinnable wars, which have made the United States the most hated country in the world. Those wars have contributed greatly to the unraveling of the American economy and who knows, perhaps eventually the American empire. (Could it be that battered, bombed Afghanistan, the graveyard of the Soviet Union, will be the undoing of this one too?) Hundreds of thousands people including thousands of American soldiers have lost their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan. The frequency of terrorist strikes on U.S allies/agents (including India) and U.S interests in the rest of the world has increased dramatically since 9/11. George Bush, the man who led the US response to 9/11 is a despised figure not just internationally, but also by his own people. Who can possibly claim that the United States is winning the war on terror?

Homeland Security has cost the US government billions of dollars. Few countries, certainly not India, can afford that sort of price tag. But even if we could, the fact is that this vast homeland of ours cannot be secured or policed in the way the United States has been. It’s not that kind of homeland. We have a hostile nuclear weapons state that is slowly spinning out of control as a neighbour, we have a military occupation in Kashmir and a shamefully persecuted, impoverished minority of more than 150 million Muslims who are being targeted as a community and pushed to the wall, whose young see no justice on the horizon, and who, were they to totally lose hope and radicalise, end up as a threat not just to India, but to the whole world. If ten men can hold off the NSG commandos, and the police for three days, and if it takes half a million soldiers to hold down the Kashmir valley, do the math. What kind of Homeland Security can secure India?

Nor for that matter will any other quick fix. Anti-terrorism laws are not meant for terrorists; they’re for people that governments don’t like. That’s why they have a conviction rate of less than 2%. They’re just a means of putting inconvenient people away without bail for a long time and eventually letting them go. Terrorists like those who attacked Mumbai are hardly likely to be deterred by the prospect of being refused bail or being sentenced to death. It’s what they want.

What we’re experiencing now is blowback, the cumulative result of decades of quick fixes and dirty deeds. The carpet’s squelching under our feet.

The only way to contain (it would be naïve to say end) terrorism is to look at the monster in the mirror. We’re standing at a fork in the road. One sign says Justice, the other Civil War. There’s no third sign and there’s no going back. Choose.

Posted by: informer | December 25, 2008

RSS: NUKE THE WORLD AND GET RID OF THE DEMONS

RSS: NUKE THE WORLD AND GET RID OF THE DEMONS
By J.Sri Raman
Chennai: Mumbai’s terrorist outrage of November 26 has found a response truly matching it in madness. A call for a nuclear war – and nothing less – has come as the culmination of warped and warlike reactions to the traumatizing tragedy, which has claimed a toll of 200 lives.

The demented call, which still cannot, unfortunately, be dismissed as inconsequential, is not only a regional war of the said, scary description. It is also one for a global conflict of the kind.

Fittingly, the call has emanated from the real fuehrer of India’s far right. He may be relatively unknown to the outside world, and less known even in his country than political leaders of the “parivar,” as the far-right “family” labels itself. But Kuppahalli Sitaramayya Sudarshan is the supremo of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), the misleading name meaning the National Volunteers’ Association.

The RSS holds a commanding position in the parivar, as its patriarch and ideological fountainhead. It has a hold over the political front of the “family,” the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), as well. Party leaders – even of such notoriety as Narendra Modi, who gloried in the Gujarat pogrom of 2002, and of such national-level ambitions as Lal Krishna Advani, styled as the “shadow prime minister” – have always had to proclaim loyalty of the RSS from time to time.

The RSS, as every political reporter in India knows, has tightened its hold over the BJP in time for the parliamentary elections to be held by May 2009. Sudarshan’s clarion call came in the course of an interview with a freelance journalist and was quoted first in a leading Pakistani newspaper on December 12. Asked if India should go for a full-fledged war with Pakistan, 77-year-old Sudarshan said, “If there is no other way left. Whenever the demons start dominating this planet, there is no way other than the war. Tell me if there is any other way out. But war should be the last resort. Before that India should consider other options.”

That was his only attempt at sounding reasonable. Asked if such a war would not escalate into a nuclear conflict, he was disarmingly candid, “Yes, I know it will not stop there. It will be nuclear war and a large number of people will perish.”

The vision of the apocalypse was not restricted to the region. “In fact, not me alone but many people around the world have expressed their apprehension that this terrorism may ultimately result in a Third World War. And this will be a nuclear war in which many of us are going to be finished. But according to me, as of now, it is very necessary to defeat the demons and there is no other way.”

Then came the coup de grace: “And let me say with confidence that after this destruction, a new world will emerge, which will be very good, free from evil and terrorism.”

He had hinted at his horrific vision earlier too. In January 2002, when India and Pakistan traded nuclear threats during a terrifying standoff in Kashmir and elsewhere, Sudarshan recalled epic Mahabharata to make his point: “When [the] Mahabharata [war] was fought in Kurukshetra, its repercussions were felt across the country but now India was the Kurukshetra and the battle, if fought, would have its effects across the globe.”

In May 2005, in another media interview, he said that Pakistan-controlled Kashmir (Azad Kashmir) should be “annexed by force.” What if there is a nuclear war? He said, “If it happens, it’ll happen. We can’t keep quiet all the time because of the scare of nuclear weapons.”

It took a Mumbai, however, for Sudarshan to come out with his blood-curdling call with barely a reservation or qualification.

As Sudarshan acknowledged, he knew what a nuclear war meant – for the region and the world. Every reasonably educated person should know as well, after so many expert studies on the subject.

According to one of the studies, for example, if five cities each of India and Pakistan are hit in a nuclear war, about 1.7 million people will be killed in India and about 1.2 million in Pakistan, or a total of about three million in the region. If 15 cities of the two countries (eight in India and seven in Pakistan) are nuked, according to a classified Pentagon study, the toll could mount to 12 million deaths. Carcinogenic black rain in coastal areas of Hiroshima-like high humidity and the velocity of summer winds and dust storms especially in the India-Pakistan border region will widen the fallout. The global consequences will be no less grim – even if the conflict remains regional and does not become a world war of Sudarshan’s vision. Ira Helfand, a US medical specialist, in a study of October 2007, projected “a total global death toll in the range of one billion from starvation alone” as a result of the regional war over a period of time.

Earlier studies have suggested that such a conflict would throw five million tonnes of black soot into the atmosphere, causing a reduction of 1.25 degrees Celsius in the average temperature at the earth’s surface for several years. Consequently, the annual growing season in the world’s most important grain-producing areas would shrink by between 10 and 20 days. According to Helfand, the world was ill prepared to cope with such a disaster. “Global grain stocks stand at 49 days, lower than at any point in the past five decades. These stocks would not provide any significant reserve in the event of a sharp decline in production. We would see hoarding on a global scale.” All this was said quite sometime before the eruption of the latest food crisis.

Yet another study estimates the smoke unleashed by 100 small 15-kiloton nuclear warheads could destroy 30 percent to 40 percent of the world’s ozone layer. This is expected to kill off some food crops.

A Third World War with origins in this region may lead to the emergence of a “terror-free” world of Sudarshan’s special sense, but it will be a significantly truncated world indeed, to go by all available evidence. Nuclear militarism had always occupied a prominent place on the ultra-nationalist agenda of the RSS and the parivar. The BJP’s parent body, the Jan Sangh, had demanded an Indian bomb, even in 1951, a full 13 years before China acquired nuclear weapons. The very first thing the BJP-led government of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee did in May 1998 was to conduct bomb tests and declare India a nuclear-weapon state. The regret in parivar circles is that the bomb is yet to be used.

During the Kargil conflict between India and Pakistan in 1999, the RSS organ in Hindi, Panchjanya, wrote, “Pakistan will not listen just like that. We have a centuries-old debt to settle with this [Islamic] mindset. It is the same demon that has been throwing a challenge at Durga [Hindu goddess] since the time of Mohammed bin Qasim [of Saudi Arabia, eighth century, who conquered Sind and Punjab].”

Panchjanya added, “Arise, Atal Bihari! Who knows if fate has destined you to be the author of the final chapter of this long story. For what have we manufactured bombs? For what have exercised the nuclear option?”

What makes Sudarshan’s call scarier is the not so indirect support he is receiving from supposedly apolitical “security” experts. Says one of them, Marroof Raza, “The suggestion of external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee that India could exercise a military option against Pakistan has alarmed the international community, particularly the US, that a war between the two nuclear-armed neighbors could see the first ever use of nuclear weapons by both sides. It is precisely this nuclear nightmare scenario that Pakistan’s establishment and its military brass, in particular, have often exploited to blackmail the world each time India wants to take them to task for their many acts of terror….”

This sounds like a repetition of the RSS chief’s rhetoric: “How long can we keep quiet all the time because of the scare of nuclear weapons?”

Satish Chandra, a former Indian ambassador to Pakistan and deputy national security adviser in the Vajpayee government, said on December 14, “Terror outfits operating from Pakistan are state supported. Until and unless we inflict pain on Pakistan we are not going to achieve results.” He added, “We have a variety of options before us. Water, agriculture, covert action and economy are some of the options before us to get the results. You have other options as well.” The last sentence can again sound Sudarshan-like to some.

Meanwhile, the post-Mumbai war of words between New Delhi and Islamabad has served to illustrate the special danger of a nuclear conflict in the specific regional context. What New Delhi described as a “hoax call” was allegedly made to Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari on November 28 by a man who claimed to be India’s External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee and spoke in a “threatening” tone. The call threatened eruption of a military conflict, with Pakistan placing its army on high alert and its air force moving aircraft to forward bases on its front with India.

A semblance of normalcy has now been restored with Mukherjee denying the call and Zardari officially accepting the denial. The incident, however, has shown how well-founded are the apprehensions of an accidental nuclear war in the region, voiced by the peace movements in both the countries

Islamabad’s official response to war cries from within India has been an attempt to sound reasonable, but not without a counterwarning of the same nuclear kind. Pakistan’s Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani told the country’s parliament, “We are a nuclear power … we want to act in a graceful manner and we do not want to create an impression that we are an irresponsible nation.”

Surprisingly, no political party in India has so far reacted to Sudarshan’s call to nuclear arms. Parties and forces opposed to the far right have, perhaps, chosen to treat his declaration with the contempt it deserves, in their view. If they have done so, they are indulging in an egregious error. The nuclear saber-rattling needs to be taken with the utmost seriousness.

Particularly eloquent, of course, is the silence with which the BJP has greeted the beating of the nuclear war drum. The BJP has always found it impolitic to implement the parivar’s agenda fully while in power, which it has so far had to share with allies.

This, however, may precisely be the compulsion behind Sudarshan’s call. His interview, which the RSS has taken care to authenticate officially, would appear designed to put pressure on the BJP against deviating from the path of the parivar if it returns to power in five months.

There may, thus, be a method in this nuclear madness.

Posted by: informer | December 22, 2008

Role of Rakesh Maria in deploying Karkare, Salaskar, Kamte

ATS chief Hemant Karkare, DIG Ashok Kamte and Inspector Vijay Salaskar were at their respective homes when they heard of the terrorist attacks. Karkare reached Haj House in his official vehicle where police had blocked the traffic. He put on a bullet-proof vest and helmet and walked towards CST Terminal.

Meanwhile, Salaskar had reached the Taj Palace Hotel. Joint commissioner of police Rakesh Maria, who was at the control room, directed him to the Colaba station where two israelis had been detained at Nariman house. Maria later directed Salaskar to the Cama Hospital. On his way, he met Karkare and they headed towards Special Branch Office at Dhobi Talao, right behind the Cama Hospital. Kamte joined them there.

They got into a Qualis with Salaskar at the wheel while Kamte besides him. Karkare sat behind them and three constables occupied the rear seats.

They intercepted a terrorist behind St. Xavier’s College. It was Ajmal Amir Kasab. Salaskar shot at him with his service revolver and hit his hand. He dropped the bad he carrying. As the vehicle closed towards Kasab and slowed down, Ismail, Kasab’s associate emerged and took all by surprise. He sprayed bullets from his AK-47 and hit Salaskar, Karkare, and Kamte. Both the the terrorists pulled their bodies out and made away with the vehicle. In the back, lay constable Arun Jadhav with two of his dead colleagues – taken by the terrorists to be dead as well. He survived and was able to tell the whereabouts of the two as they switched the cars.

Both the terrorists were eventually cornered at a blockade near chowpatty. Kasab was captured.

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“YOU WERE QUIET ALL ALONG WHEN MUSLIMS WERE BEING TORUTRED, THEIR WOMEN WERE BEING RAPED IN POLICE STATIONS, BROTHERS WERE BEING ASKED TO RAPE SISTERS BY RAKESH MARIA–YES THE SAME MAN WHO IS NOW HEADING THE MUMBAI INVESTIGATION…”  – (quoted from http://ghulammuhammed.wordpress.com/2008/12/21/debate-between-subhashini-ali-and-amaresh-misra/ )

Posted by: informer | December 22, 2008

SON OF MUSLIM ACTIVIST ARRESTED BY NAGPUR ATS

New Delhi: A statement by the All India Muslim Majlis-e Mushawarat (AIMMM) has issued a statement here: The Mushawarat has taken a strong view of the kidnapping, allegedly by the Nagpur ATS, of Mr Mohammad Talha, 23-year son of Maulana Aamir Rashadi, Principal of the famous Jamiatur Rashad Islamic educational institution in Azamgarh town and a well-known Muslim scholar and human rights activist in Uttar Pradesh. Mohammad Talha is a financial analyst in a multinational IT company in Hyderabad. He was returning to Hyderabad after spending his holidays in Azamgarh, by the Patna-Sikandarabad Express. He alighted at Nagpur at 11.30 pm alongwith a colleague to fetch water. Persons claiming to be from the ATS grabbed him, pushed his colleague to the floor and spirited Talha away. This morning he was allowed to speak to his father for a few minutes during which he pleaded with his father not to make any noises about his arrest, otherwise he will be in greater trouble. The same threat was later repeated by a person who claimed to be a police officer. Talha’s whereabouts are not known and it not certain who have kidnapped him.

Dr Zafarul-Islam Khan, President of the AIMMM, said that the arrest of a techie who is the son of a well-known Muslim scholar and leader who has been in the forefront of the protest against the criminalisation of Azamgarh in the wake of the Batla House encounter, is a warning to all Muslims who are raising their voices against the injustices perpetrated by security agencies in the name of fighting terror. Prima facie it is a case of exerting pressure on an active human rights defender by kidnapping his son.

Posted by: informer | December 21, 2008

Who Killed Hemant Karkare?

In all the confusion and horror generated by the Bombay attacks, the circumstances surrounding the death of Anti-Terrorist Squad (ATS) chief Hemant Karkare and two of his colleagues, encounter specialist Vijay Salaskar and Additional Commissioner of Police Ashok Kamte deserve greater attention. The operations involved well-organised attacks on high-profile sites in Colaba – the Taj, Oberoi and Trident Hotels and Nariman House – and a parallel set of operations targeting Victoria Terminus station, Cama Hospital and the Metro cinema, near the police headquarters where Karkare worked. The latter is an area where foreigners are much less likely to be found.

Why is a Proper Investigation Crucial?
Prior to his death, Hemant Karkare was unearthing a terror network unlike any that has been seen thus far. The investigation started by tracing the motorcycle used to plant bombs in Malegaon in September 2008 to a Hindu Sadhvi, Pragyasingh Thakur. In a cellphone conversation between Thakur and Ramji, the man who planted the bombs, she asked why more people had not been killed. For the first time, the Indian state was conducting a thorough professional probe into a terror network involving Hindu extremist organisations, this one with huge ramifications, some leading into military and bomb-making training camps and politicised elements in the army, others into organisations and political leaders affiliated to the BJP. One of the most potentially explosive discoveries was that a serving army officer, Lt.Col. Srikant Purohit, had procured 60 kg of RDX from government supplies for use in the terrorist attack on the Samjhauta Express (the India-Pakistan ‘Understanding’ train) in February 2007, in which 68 people were killed, the majority of them Pakistanis. Initially, militants of Lashkar-e-Taiba and other Islamist terror groups had been accused of carrying out the attack, but no evidence against them had been found.

The investigation generated enormous hostility, with allegations (refuted by medical examinations) that the suspects had been tortured and that Karkare was being used as a political tool, and demands that the ATS team should be changed. Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi, and BJP Prime Ministerial candidate, L.K.Advani accused him of being a ‘desh drohi’ or traitor, a charge that in India carries a death penalty, and the Shiv Sena offered legal aid to those accused of the terrorist attack, complaining that ‘The government does not save Hindus from terrorists, and if Hindus defend themselves, they are maligned’. In an interview shortly before he died, Karkare admitted he was hurt by the campaign against him. On November 26, just before the terrorist attack, the police in Pune received a call from an anonymous caller saying in Marathi that Karkare would be killed in a bomb blast within two or three days.

Just as attitudes to Karkare in society at large were polarised, with some admiring him as a hero – one Maulana went so far as to call him a ‘massiha (messiah) of Muslims’, an amazing tribute from a Muslim to a Hindu – while others hated him as a traitor worthy of death, attitudes within the police force too were polarised. For example, dismissed encounter specialist Sachin Vaze (who with three colleagues was charged with murder, criminal conspiracy, destruction of evidence and concealment of the dead body in the case of Khwaja Yunus shortly before the terrorist attack) was a member of the Shiv Sena who was actively engaged in the campaign against Karkare and in support of the Malegaon blast accused. Vaze and several other encounter specialists who had been dismissed for corruption, extortion and links with the underworld also had a grudge against Salaskar, whom they suspected of informing on them.

Hard Evidence or Pulp Fiction?
Given this background, and reports that are riddled with inconsistencies, it is not surprising that many residents of Bombay are asking questions about the exact circumstances of the death of Hemant Karkare and his colleagues. The earliest reports, presumably relayed from the police via the media, said that Karkare had been killed at the Taj, and Salaskar and Kamte at Metro. If this was not true, why were we told this? And why was the story later changed? Was it because it conflicted with eye-witness accounts? In the early hours of the 27th, under the heading ‘ATS Chief Hemant Karkare Killed: His Last Pics’, IBNlive showed footage first of Karkare putting on a helmet and bullet-proof vest, then cut to a shootout at Metro, where an unconscious man who looks like Karkare and wearing the same light blue shirt and dark trousers (but without any blood on his shirt or the terrible wounds we saw on his face at his funeral) is being pulled into a car by two youths in saffron shirts. The commentary says that Karkare ‘could well have fallen prey to just indiscriminate, random firing by the cops’, and also reports that there were two vehicles, a Toyota Qualis and Honda City, from which the occupants were firing indiscriminately.

Later we were given two accounts of the killings where the venue is shifted to a deserted lane without cameras or eye-witnesses. The first account is by the lone terrorist captured alive, claiming to be A.A.Kasab from Faridkot in Pakistan and a member of the terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba. According to him, just two gunmen, he and Ismail (also from Pakistan), first attacked VT station, where they sprayed bullets indiscriminately. (Around 58 people were killed there, over one-third of them Muslims, and many more might have been killed if the announcer, Mr Zende, had not risked his life to direct passengers to safety.) They then went to Cama, a government hospital for women and children used mainly by the poor. Initially, according to the police, Kasab claimed he and Ismail had killed Karkare, Salaskar and Kamte. Later, in his confession, he claimed that while coming out of the hospital, he and Ismail saw a police vehicle passing and hid behind a bush; then another vehicle passed them and stopped some distance away. A police officer got out and started firing at them, hitting Kasab on the hand so that he dropped his AK47, but Ismail opened fire on the officers in the car until they stopped firing. There were three bodies in the vehicle, which Ismail removed, and then drove off in it with Kasab.

The other account is by police constable Arun Jadhav. According to him, Karkare, Salaskar, Kamte, a driver and four police constables including himself were driving down the alley from VT to the back entrance of Cama (barely a ten-minute drive) in their Toyota Qualis to check on injured police officer Sadanand Date when two gunmen emerged from behind trees by the left side of the road and sprayed the vehicle with bullets, killing all its passengers except Jadhav. They then dragged out the three officers, hijacked the vehicle, drove to Metro junction and then Mantralaya in South Bombay, abandoned it when a tyre burst, and grabbed another car. According to police accounts, they then drove to Girgaum, where Kasab was injured and arrested and his companion killed.

These accounts raise more questions than they answer. Kasab claimed that a band of ten terrorists landed and split up into twos, going to various destinations, he and his companion going to VT. He said they wanted to blow up the Taj, as in the attack on the Marriott in Islamabad; yet we are told that only 8kg of RDX were found at the Taj, and even that was not used; contrast this with 600kg of RDX and TNT used to blow up the Marriott: could they really have expected to blow up the Taj? How did the invaders from the sea get one bomb to go off in Dockyard Road and another in Vile Parle, 25 kilometres away? He said that the terrorists planned to use their hostages as a means of escape, yet there was no attempt at any such negotiations; at other times, he also said they had been instructed to fight to the death. He says he is a labourer from Faridkot near Multan and only studied up to Class IV, but it is reported that he speaks fluent English. Several people have pointed out that the pictures of him in VT show him wearing a saffron wrist-band, a Hindu custom, and police later revealed that he could not recite a single verse from the Koran, which any child growing up in a Muslim family would have been able to do. Indeed, a thoughtful article on the soc.culture.jewish group argued that none of the terrorists were Muslims, given their appearance and behaviour (especially their reported consumption of alcohol and drugs), pointing out that they did not need to disguise themselves, since Muslims who look like Muslims are plentiful in Bombay, and would not attract undue attention.

During his interrogation, Kasab said that he and eight of the operatives had done a reconnaissance trip to Bombay a few months back, pretending to be students and renting a room at Colaba market, which is close to Nariman House. It is extremely hard for Pakistani nationals to get Indian visas, and they are kept under close surveillance by the police; it is also most unlikely that the Indian immigration authorities would be fooled by forged passports of another country. In that case, the Indian immigration authorities would have visa applications of nine of the terrorists including Kasab, and could match the photographs in them to those of the terrorists: has this been done? Later, Kasab changed his mind and said that the team who carried out reconnaisance was different from the team who had carried out the attacks.

The events in VT and Cama and the back lane also put a question mark over his story. According to witnesses, two gunmen started firing at the mainline terminus in VT at 21:55 on Wednesday night, but at precisely the same time, according to CCTV footage, two gunmen began an assault on the suburban terminus. If the first account is true, there were four gunmen at the station: where did the other two come from, and where did they go? We are shown video footage, claiming to be CCTV but without the timeline of normal CCTV footage, of Kasab and Ismail wandering around the parking lot near the mainline terminus. This surely cannot be before the shootout, since the station is completely deserted; and after the shootout, Kasab and Ismail are supposed to have escaped via the footbridge from Platform 1 of the suburban station on the other side of VT: this, again, suggests there were four gunmen. Even if Kasab and Ismail had been shown photographs of Karkare, Salaskar and Kamte before they embarked on their trip, how could they possibly have identified the police officers in a dark alley in the dead of night according to Kasab’s first story? According to later his confession, a police officer got out of the vehicle and started firing first, injuring him; how, then, did Ismail manage to kill the rest by himself?

Witnesses in Cama hospital say the terrorists spoke fluent Marathi, and this report has been confirmed. The gunmen killed two guards in uniform, spared a third, who was in civilian dress and begged for his life saying he was the husband of a patient, demanded water from an employee in the staff quarters and then killed him. They then appear to have made a beeline for the 6th floor (which was empty) and the terrace, taking with them the liftman, Tikhe. 15-30 minutes later, six to eight policemen arrived, and another employee took them up to the 6th floor. The policemen threw a piece of steel up to the terrace, whereupon Tikhe came running down and told them there were two terrorists on the terrace. A fierce gun-battle ensued for 30 to 45 minutes, in which ACP Sadanand Date was injured. Panic-stricken patients and staff in the maternity ward on the 5th floor barricaded the door; nurses instructed the women to breast-feed their babies to keep them quiet, and one woman, who was in the middle of labour, was told to hold back the birth; but they were not invaded. Eventually the gunmen appear to have escaped, it is not clear how. If they were Kasab and Ismail, then these two must have been fluent Marathi speakers. And why would they have taken up positions on the terrace? Was it because they would have a direct view of the lane in which Karkare, Salaskar and Kamte were later supposedly killed?

The other account is equally dubious. In his first account, Jadhav said Karkare was in the second row of the Qualis, while in the second he was supposed to be in the front row with Kamte. In the second account, Salaskar was initially sitting behind the driver, but then asked the driver to slow down and got behind the wheel himself: is it plausible that an experienced encounter specialist would deliberately make himself into a sitting duck like this when they were in hot pursuit of terrorists? In the first account they were supposed to be going to check up on their injured colleague Sadanand Date, but in the second were supposed to be looking for a red car in which they had been told the gunmen were traveling. If the report about the red car was a decoy to lure them into an ambush, it is important to know who told them that the terrorists were in a red car. If the gunmen were firing from the left side, as Jadhav claimed, how was Karkare hit three times in the chest while Jadhav himself got two bullets in his right arm? In fact, the only vegetation in that part of the lane is on the right side and has wire netting around it; it would be necessary to climb over the netting to hide behind it, and climb over again to come out: impossible under the circumstances. Witnesses say only two bodies were found at the spot next morning: what happened to the third officer? Who were the three constables killed?

How did two terrorists manage to kill six police personnel, including Karkare and Kamte who he said were armed with AK47s and Salaskar, an encounter specialist, when one terrorist was later captured and the other killed by policemen armed only with two rifles and lathis? Assistant Police Inspector Ombale was killed in that encounter, but his colleagues survived.

There was also an intriguing report in DNA on 28 November saying that Anand Raorane, a resident of a building opposite Nariman House, heard sounds of celebration from the terrorists there when the news of Karkare getting killed was flashed on TV: isn’t that strange? The same report quoted a resident of Nariman House and a local shopkeeper who said that the terrorists had purchased large quantities of food and liquor before the attack, suggesting that more than two of them were planning to occupy the place for a long time. Another DNA report, on 2 December, said that sub-inspector Durgude, who had been posted in front of St Xavier’s College, between Cama Hospital and the exit point of the back lane onto Mahapalika Road, saw two young men whom he took to be students and called out to warn them that there was firing at Cama. When they ignored him, he approached them, upon which one of them turned an AK47 on him and killed him. If Kasab and Ismail were there, who was firing inside Cama? Eye-witnesses in St Xavier’s saw a man shot and lying on the pavement in front of the college around 12.30 a.m., while about three gunmen stood over him: who was that? Various reports said that two to eight terrorists were captured alive. Now there is only one in police custody: what happened to the other(s)?

A careful scrutiny of all the reports available so far suggests, to this writer anyway, that the killing of Karkare and his colleagues was a premeditated act, executed by a group that had stationed gunmen at various points along the general route between VT and the Metro cinema with a view to maximising their chances of a successful murderous assault.

The Objective: Shutting Down Terrorist Networks
These are just a few of the numerous questions being asked by vigilant Bombayites who find themselves thoroughly dissatisfied with the information that has been doled out. These are citizens who understand the importance of identifying terrorist networks and shutting them down, but doubt that this will be done by the authorities. Why are they so cynical about the possibility of a genuine professional investigation? The answer is that we have too much bitter experience of investigations in which innocent people (usually Muslim youth) are rounded up, tortured and even killed, while the real culprits are allowed to go free. Karkare broke with this dismal record, but now he is dead. When a person who has been vilified, slandered and threatened with death is killed in suspicious circumstances, it is imperative that a proper investigation should be carried out soon, before too much evidence can be manufactured and/or destroyed. If Kasab aka Iman disappears or is assassinated like Lee Harvey Oswald, or is executed, that would be further evidence of a conspiracy.

The government and people of Pakistan have as much interest as the government and people of India in eliminating the terror networks that have killed President Asif Ali Zardari’s wife Benazir Bhutto and thousands of others in both Pakistan and India. The terrorists, on the other hand, be they Islamist or Hindutva, have a common interest in destroying secularism, democracy and peace within and between the two countries. That is their precise agenda. Pakistani politicians have offered a joint investigation into the terrorist attacks, a far more sensible suggestion than the belligerent statements by some Indians accusing Pakistan of harbouring terrorists who are killing Indians. It should be obvious that a military conflict between India and Pakistan would be disastrous for both countries economically, while a nuclear war, which might ensue if extremist forces captured power in both countries, would have unthinkable consequences. If the Indo-Pakistan peace process is halted, as L.K.Advani advocates, the terrorists would have won.

Indeed, without a joint investigation, the terrorist networks behind this outrage can never be uncovered: how else could the names and addresses in Pakistan revealed by Kasab be followed up to the satisfaction of all parties? A team of Pakistani investigators should be invited to come to Bombay and interview Kasab. If he is indeed a Lashkar-e-Taiba militant, he will be able to provide invaluable information, and a team of investigators from India should be invited to Pakistan to pursue the investigation there. If, as some reports have indicated, he is not what he claims to be, that too would become clear. The Indian government owes it to the memory of Karkare, Salaskar and Kamte, who died fighting terrorism of all hues, to establish exactly where, when and how they were killed, identify their killers, and make sure that their work is continued. They also owe it to us, the public, who are the prime targets of all terrorist attacks, to carry out a credible investigation which identifies and puts behind bars all the mass murderers involved in this and other attacks.

The Spirit of Bombay Survives
Despite all the hype, this was not the worst terrorist attack in Bombay; that title goes to the reign of terror which started it all, the anti-Muslim pogrom following the demolition of the Babri masjid in December 1992, in which over 900 people were killed. After each attack, the residents of Bombay have worked hard to restore the inclusiveness and warmth which characterises their city, and this was no exception. On 10 December, exactly two weeks after the attack began, women’s groups perambulated the whole of VT station with a single slogan: jang nahin, aman chahiye (no to war, we want peace). A few people contradicted them, but the majority accepted or even asked for leaflets. On 12 December, over 60,000 people from all walks of life formed a human chain throughout the length and breadth of Bombay, proclaiming unity and peace in opposition to terrorism, war, communalism and violence. In a TV interview, a group of very articulate schoolgirls, carrying placards with slogans like ‘Love Conquers All,’ expressed their determination to stay united and unafraid in the face of all efforts to divide the people of India. The spirit of Bombay lives on, thanks to these people.

R.H. is a writer, researcher and social activist based in Bombay.

note:This piece originally appeared in Samar 32, published online December 15th, 2008.

AMARESH MISRA

Now who has the last laugh? That is the question; I only have pity for those who cannot see reality and who were so glib to buy into what the media and political troubleshooters were saying about the Mumbai Blasts.

Consider this:
As a BBC report notes, at least some of the Mumbai attackers were not Indian and certainly not Muslim.Pappu Mishra, a cafe proprietor at the gothic Victorian Chattrapati Shivaji Terminus railway station, described “two sprightly young men dressed in black” with AK47s who were “foreign looking, fair skinned.”Gaffar Abdul Amir, an Iraqi tourist from Baghdad, saw at least two men who started the firing outside the Leopold Cafe. “They did not look Indian, they looked foreign. One of them, I thought, had blonde hair. The other had a punkish hairstyle. They were neatly dressed,” Amir told the BBC.

According to Andrew G. Marshall, the ISI “has long been referred to as Pakistan’s ‘secret government’ or ‘shadow state.’ It’s long-standing ties and reliance upon American and British intelligence have not let up, therefore actions taken by the ISI should be viewed in the context of being a Central Asian outpost of Anglo-American covert intelligence operations.” The presence of “foreign looking, fair skinned” commandos who calmly gunned down dozens of people after drinking a few beers indicates that the Mumbai attacks were likely the work of the Anglo-American covert intelligence operatives, not indigenous Indian Muslims or for that matter Arab al-Qaeda terrorists. The attacks prepare the ground for the break-up of Pakistan and the furtherance of destabilizing terrorism in the Middle East and Asia. The Mumbai attacks had little to do with India or the relationship between Muslim Pakistanis and Hindu Indians.”Pakistan’s position as a strategic focal point cannot be underestimated. It borders India, Afghanistan, China and Iran,” concludes Marshall. “Destabilizing and ultimately breaking Pakistan up into several countries or regions will naturally spread chaos and destabilization into neighboring countries. This is also true of Iraq on the other side of Iran, as the Anglo-American have undertaken, primarily through Iraq, a strategy of balkanizing the entire Middle East in a new imperial project.” (See Marshall’s Divide and Conquer: The Anglo-American Imperial Project.)

Now I ask specifically: WHO HAS EGG ON THE FACE? MY DETRACTORS OR ME?

Andrew Marshall is a respected author; he is clearly saying here that terrorists looked like Anglo-American covert operatives and that the entire Mumbai operation was an attempt by Anglo-American forces to destabilize India and push it further into the Israel-US orbit. Marshall also says that Americans are keen to dismember Pakistan–it is clear that in this project, America needs India as a firm ally–it cannot afford Indo-Pak friendship at least on a long-term basis. The Mumbai attack thus was multi-layered–and one of the reasons could be to warn India that the Anglo-American elite has the power to penetrate India, with the help of its own people. Clearly, the attackers would not have come from the sea route without some kind of a connivance of Gujarat and Maharashtra Governments with the terrorists, and the connivance of RSS type Hindutva elements as I will prove later in the piece.

This afore-mentioned report appeared on the BBC, a news agency which pro-west, Muslim-haters and all NRIs love to see. NOW I ASK THESE PEOPLE: why are you adopting double standards? Now a BBC report is incovenient because it militates against your idea of what happened in Mumbai?
Even the Indian Government is aware of this reality. That is why it is not issuing statements in a hurry and that is why the kind of Islamo-phobia seen earlier after Bomb Blasts is not being seen now.

A second report is more shocking–some news channels captured it but then it went off air:

One Police officer who encountered the gunmen as they entered the Jewish Center (Nariman House) said the attackers were white. “I went into the building late last night” he said. “I got a shock because they were white. I was expecting them to look like us. They fired three shots. I fired 10 back”.

The Nariman House affair brings the Mossad angle to the fore. Two of the `hostages’ killed in the Narimam House were identified as Rabbi Gabreil Holtzberg and his wife Rivka. They ran the center as spokespersons of the Chabad Lubavitch movement.

Now the Chabad movement is one of the many sects within Israel and Judaism. But of late it has come under the Zionist influence. Now what is Zionism? A brief digression would suffice: Zionism is the political ideology of racist Jews, just like Hindutva is the political ideology of a section of `race conscious’ Hindus. Just as a majority of Sanatani Hindus have opposed Hindutva, a majority of Jews oppose Zionism and its fascist-anti-religious tone.
In opposition to the teachings of Judaism, the orthodox Jew religion, Zionists want to dominate the world; they see the `Jewish race’ as the most important, almost divine, race in the world. Zionists are opposed to democracy and even the concept of naitonhood. Zionists believe in creating murder and mayhem as a matter of policy.

In America, Zionists have entered into an alliance with the American elites–the White-Anglo-Saxon Protestant (WASP) forces–which rule America. The reasons for this alliance lie in the way the Zionist agenda matches with that of the American corporate and WASP elite and is beyond the scope of this article.

People who do not understand Zionism will never be able to understand what happened in Mumbai.

Back to members of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement killed at Nariman House–people have asked how come the Rabbi and his wife were killed if Mossad is involved in the Mumbai terror attack?

The answer to this is being forwarded by Jewish anti-Zionist websites. They also detail the sectarian history of the Chabad-Lubavitch movement:

The attack on Mumbai spotlights the ultra-orthodox (haredi) Chabad-Lubavitch community and its international outreach network. When Chabad outreach (keruv) started in the 1950s, it seemed rather intellectually dishonest because the organization used nostalgia for a never-existent Jewish past as a hook to enmesh secular or secularized Jews in ultra-orthodox (haredi) practice as hozrim bitshuvah (returnees, sometimes improperly called baalei tshuvah), but on the whole the activity was mostly harmless in contrast with current Chabad activities, which long ago crossed the border into dangerous territory.
As the Lubavitcher organization has become larger and wealthier — partially because mobilization for keruv has brought large contributions, members have shown a propensity for corruption.

Yet, the Lubavitchers have worked closely with Jewish racists like Lawrence Summers and Alan Dershowitz in the ongoing attempt to control discourse on American campuses. The wealthy Russian Lubavitcher hozer bitshuvah Lev Leviev openly supports Zionist terrorism and settlement building in the Palestinan occupied territories. Possibly because of Leviev Chabad-Lubavitch has openly become involved in Putin’s struggles with Russian Jewish oligarchs.
Still, there is an even more sinister aspect to the Lubavitcher organization.

Because Lubavitcher outreach offices are located in some of the most important political, corporate and university centers throughout the world, the Lubavitchers have put together a network that is incomparable for corporate and international espionage as well as for the secret exchange of information. Because Chabad Houses could potentially act as safe houses, where there would be no record of a person’s stay.

Most people do not take the Lubavitchers seriously, but I have visited Chabad houses and encountered senior Israeli government or military officials (and probably intelligence agents). One can easily imagine that Neocon intelligentsia trying to develop a relationship with Hindutva (हिन�द�त�व) intelligentsia or politicians might have used the Chabad Nariman House as a meeting place.

Here a Jew is saying that he has visited Chabad houses and that he has seen covert operations going on and the involvement of senior Government and military officials of Israel. This Jew writer is also talking openly about a Neo-Con-Chabad-Hindutva tie-up!

The Jew writer mentions the Mossad involvement in Chabad Houses:

Because the Lubavitchers provide an unconditional welcome to all Jews in the hope of bringing them closer to the Lubavitcher way of life, the Lubavitchers have been open to potential subversion by Israeli intelligence organizations. Mossad and Shin Bet found it quite easy to penetrate the haredi community during the Yossele Affair. Jewish politics has often involved infiltration and subversion of one political group by another. The David Project Israel Advocacy organization has used its educational programs as a means to infiltrate more mainstream Jewish communal organizations with radical Islamophobes and Jabotinskian Zionists.
To Zionize haredi groups that practice outreach, the Israeli government need only give encouragement to Zionistically indoctrinated Hebrew-speaking young people to participate in outreach programs, and in a few years the targeted haredi community is thoroughly enmeshed in Zionist thinking while Israeli intelligence organizations have a new crop of saya`nim in place ready to serve in Zionist covert operations.

What is a sayanim? Go to the link http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sayanim and it states that “Sayanim (Hebrew: “helpers”) is a term used to describe Jews living outside Israel who volunteer to provide assistance to the Mossad.[1] This assistance includes facilitating medical care, money, logistics, and even overt intelligence gathering, yet sayanim are only paid for their expenses. No official number is known, but estimates put the number of sayanim in the thousands. The existence of this large body of volunteers is one reason why the Mossad operates with fewer case officers than fellow intelligence agencies”

Now back to the link http://eaazi.blogspot.com/2008/12/chabad-lubavitch-dangerous-game.html from which I was quoting the Jewish writer originally. He says that the Lubavitcher shluchim (outreach emissaries) Gavriel Noach and Rivka Holtzberg fit the `sayanim’ profile to a “T” — especially Rivkah.
So the two people killed in Nariman House fit the Sayanim, that is Jews outside Israel who volunteer to provide assistance to Mossad, profile!

NOW WHAT OTHER PROOF DO YOU WANT?

The Jewish writer of the afore-mentioned link himself asks the question:

WOULD MOSSAD HAVE KILLED THE RABBI AND HIS WIFE IN NARIMAN HOUSE? AND HE PROVIDES THE ANSWER:

Zionists have always used dead Jews to build sympathy for Zionist goals and as cover for Zionist crimes against humanity.
Ben-Gurion explicitly stated that he would sacrifice German Jewish children for the sake of Zionism while the Zionist leadership probably learned the benefit of sacrificing Zionist operatives from the 1946 Kielce Pogrom. In this incident (Jewish) Soviet and Zionist agents probably worked together to make sure that surviving Polish Jews chose emigration to Palestine over a return to Poland.
Because the Kielce Zionist recruiters were killed during the pogrom, the events leading up to the pogrom was rendered forever unobtainable.
Some reports of the Mumbai attack indicate that the Holtzbergs rented space to the attack planners over the past few months and thereby helped make the operation far more effective.
An opportunity to interrogate the Holtzbergs would have helped investigators immensely.

AGAIN WHAT MORE DO YOU WANT?

Another piece of massive evidence: In a telephone interview with CBC News from outside the Center (Nariman House), freelance journalists Arun Asthana said that there are reports that some of the militants had stayed at a guest house there (Nariman House) for upto 15 days before the attack. “They had a huge mass of ammunition, arms and food there”, Asthana said.

Now other reports have also confirmed that a huge mass of food was ordered by the residents of the Nariman House. This food was enough for 30-40 people for several days. Why was this amount of food ordered? Also why was Nariman House not assaulted till the very last? A Gujarati Hindu resident of Mumbai came onto TV on CNN-IBN to say at around 3.30 AM or so, that for two months suspicious activities wree going in Nariman House. A lot of foreigners were seen coming in and going out. This matter was reported to the Police. But no one took action.

The CNN-IBN did not repeat the news; then it was only when the common people of Mumbai threatened to storm the Nariman House the NSG commandos were moved in–why this delay in assaulting Nariman House when only two terrorists were holed in there?
This is sheer official complicity and nothing else–AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE WHOLE NARIMAN HOUSE AFFAIR IS A MUST.

Then it was reported that ” somehow surprising to learn that the terrorists in Cama hospital in Mumbai were fluently speaking Marathi. The terrorists who are said to have fired in Cama hospital talked to an employee clad in civil dress in Marathi, reports a Marathi daily ‘Maharashtra Times’.
The newspaper said the terrorists who targeted ATS chief Hemant Karkare, police commissioner Ashok Kamte and encounter specialist Vijay Salaskar were speaking Marathi fluently.

The newspaper claims the terrorists having fired at two watchmen in uniform asked the other beside them on gunpoint in Marathi, ‘You are here an employee?’ The employee caught the legs of the terrorist and said, ‘I am not working here. My wife has suffered from heart attack and I have come here to admit her.’ The terrorist asked him again in Marathi, ‘You are speaking true or false?’ The employee answered, ‘No, by God I am speaking true.’
On this the terrorist let him go.

NOW WHAT DO WE MAKE OF THAT? Another report says that traditional Jews of Mumbai who have migrated to Israel speak fluent Marathi and are known to have been recruited by Mossad!

The death of Hemant Karkare remains a mystery. All official versions are contradictory: some say he was killed near CST, some that he died near Cama hospital, some near Metro cinema, and some that he was killed while in a Police jeep. Also, where did the bullet hit him? Some say on the neck and some near the heart. Karkare was shown on TV wearing a bullet proof vest–he could not have been shot in neck in that case, unless there was a sniper waiting for him.
Also if he was shot near heart, then when did he take out his vest? No one has even bothered to answer this question. Also, another facet is coming to light: that Karkare was killed near Cama–but Kaamte and Salaskar in the Metro shootout!

Intelligent people–what do you have to say now? It is becoming obvious that…

1. Several terrorists might have been white

2. Were they International mercanaries? If yes, then from which country? Who collected them? It is well known that Mossad and CIA have several mercenary organizations, including so-called Jihadi ones on their list. They create Jihad and manipulate Muslims disaffected by the Islamophobia in the world. Some of them might have been used in the Mumbai attack. But why were they carrying American, British, Mauritian and Malaysian passports?

3. Who were the Marathi speaking Karkare killers? The lane next to the Cama Hospital is a deserted one–it goes straight to the backyard of the Mumbai CID Headquarters. Anonymous sources in the Police have revealed that Karkare was taken there, by a joint team of anti-Karkare, pro-Hindutva Mumbai Police officers, and Chota Rajan men. Now Karkare was opposed to Chota Rajan. Salaskar was anti-Pradeep Sharma, another Mumbai senior Police officer now in jail, for working as Rajan’s shooter. So the Marathi speaking terrorists could either have been Jews with some connection to Mumbai–or hired killers of the Hindutva brigade or men of Chota Rajan.

4. It seems that several things went on simultaneously–the Mahrashtra Chief Minister Vilas Rao Deshmukh was in Kerala when the Mumbai attack began at 9.30 PM on 26th November. Then by 11PM Deshmukh had informed the Home Minister Shivraj Patil–the latter has started proceedings to send the NSG Commandos. So Deshmukh knew about what was happening by 11PM–then why was there no Mumbai Police on various locations between 9.30 and 1am, the time when Karkare arrived? The Mumbai ATS is a separate organization. it does not lead the Mumbai Police. So the 40,000 strong Mumbai Police was absent from the scene of action between 11pm to 1am and then Karkare arrived and he was killed along with his men!

Isn’t there something fishy here? Obviously the Mumbai Police was kept deliberately away between 11pm and 1am, the time period when terrorists were killing people merrily. Then Karkare must have been told–and he went there expecting Mumbai police personals to be there–but there were none or only a few! And he was killed!
—————————————–

Amaresh Mishra, the author of this article, can be contacted on
misra.amaresh@gmail.com

Posted by: informer | December 20, 2008

Mumbai Carnage: The Police Story stands shattered

Today, 18th December 2008, is a historic day. It marks the beginning of a process wherein my `theory’ about the Mumbai attack might just turn out to be true. But there is no joy. There is just an emptiness, a sadness at Karkare’s death and the killing of hundreds of innocents by the Hindutva-Mossad-CIA combine  and International/Israeli mercenaries.
The Minorities Affairs Minister AR Antulay was once a firebrand leader. But he has been quiet for long–too long; today he spoke and questioned directly Karkare’s killing in the Parliament. Antulay is a cabinet Minister; he is not known to speak out of line. Despite Abhishek Singhvi’s remark distancing the Congress from what Antulay said, the latter, it seems, definitely has the sanction of the Congress High Command at some level. Anyone supposing something else is deluding himself/herself.
Here is the text of the Times of India report:

Maintaining that “there is more than what meets the eyes”, Antulay said Karkare was investigating some cases in which “there are non-Muslims also”, an apparent reference to the Malegaon blasts case in which sadhvi Pragya Thakur and a Lt-Colonel Shrikant Prasad Purohit were among the 11 persons to be arrested.
“Unfortunately his end came. It may be a separate inquiry how his (Karkare’s) end came,” he told reporters outside Parliament.
Antulay said “Karkare found that there are non-Muslims involved in the acts of terrorism during his investigations in some cases. Any person going to the roots of terror has always been the target, he said.
“Superficially speaking they (terrorists) had no reason to kill Karkare. Whether he (Karkare) was victim of terrorism or terrorism plus something. I do not know,” he added.
When he came under attack in Lok Sabha on the issue, Antulay sought to wriggle out saying he had not talked about who killed Karkare but about “who sent him in the direction” of Cama hospital, outside which he was killed.
“Who had sent them to Cama hospital (a lane opposite which he and two other officers were killed by Pakistani terrorists on Nov 26). What were they told that made them leave for the same spot in the same vehicle.
“I repeat what I had said. I had not said who had killed them but only questioned who had sent them there (Cama Hospital) in that direction,” he said in Lok Sabha where BJP and Shiv Sena members attacked him for his remarks.
Anant Geete of Shiv Sena accused him of “misleading” the house and sought Chidambaram’s clarification.
Earlier in the day, describing Hemant Karkare as a very bold officer having great acumen and vision, Antulay asked “How come instead of going to Hotel Taj or Oberai or even the Nariman House, he went to such a place where there was nothing compared to what happened in the three places?”
“Why all the three (Hemant Karakre, Vijay Salaskar and Ashok Kamte) went together. It is beyond my comprehension,” the minister said.
The minister’s remarks came under immediate attack from BJP which asked the prime minister to clarify whether his remarks are an “individual misdemeanour or the collective wisdom of the Cabinet”.
“The remarks are obnoxious and deserves a clarification from the prime minister,” BJP spokesman Rajiv Pratap Rudy told reporters.
Reacting to Antulay’s remarks, Congress spokesman Abhishek Manu Singhvi they should be treated his “personal views” and Congress party does not agree with them and does not support such a formulation.
To a question, he said there was no question of embarrassment to the party.
Samajwadi Party MP Amar Singh, who himself was in the centre of a controversy when he had raised doubts over the killing of a Delhi police official in an encounter recently, said a senior leader like Antulay should before issuing any statement uphold the cherished tradition of collective wisdom of the cabinet.
Not completely disapproving the remarks, Union minister Ram Vilas Paswan said Antulay must be having “more information” since he hails from Maharashtra.
The issue came up when the house was discussing two bills brought in by the government to tackle terror against the backdrop of Mumbai terror attacks.
Geete said the prime minister and several senior union ministers have gone on record to say that Karkare was killed by terrorists.
Not satisfied with Antulay’s reply, Geete charged the union minister with “misleading” the house, which he “did not “expect”.

The basic evil/criminal intent of BJP-Shiv Sena politics along with their pathetic `soft’ and `hard’ supporters, stands exposed; the questions here are vital: a cabinet minister, not an Independent analyst, has questioned the Police theory about Karkare’s death. Note what Antulay is saying: WHO sent them there (Cama Hospital); how come they were traveling together?
This is exactly what we have been asking—Antulay’s statement means that that he is hinting at the role of some top functionary WHO SEND THEM THERE–(TO THEIR DEATHS)! Now put this in context with proceedings that have begun against AN Roy, the Mumbai DGP, Hasan Ghaffoor, the Mumbai Police Commissioner and the Maharashtra Home Secretary.
What do you get? That the entire Police story put forward by the likes of Rakesh Maria is suddenly under suspicion–so much for those savvy journalists like Rajdeep Sardesai and Barkha Dutt. Rajdeep in fact quoted Maria as his source and a reliable, honest officer–if he had to sell himself I am sure he could have found a better buyer. He should have learnt from Javed and Teesta.
This means that the entire police version might be wrong! Which means that there is a question mark over Kasab and Ismail killing Karkare, Salaskar and Kaamte. Which means that Kasab and Ismail might not have killed the three; which then raises the question: who killed them? Was it the Mumbai Police top brass? Or the Gujarat ATS under Narendra Modi? Or a combination of the two–again–WHO SENT THEM THERE?
This means that there is sufficient doubt over Kasab’s version! Which means that Kasab’s entire story of how he killed the three officers, plus the entire thing that he is a Jehadi etc, is a plant, something which our Police excels in! Which means that the so-called CCTV grabs etc showing the footage of Kasab and Ismail were all fake! Aziz Burney of the Rashtriya Sahara Urdu and the Marathi Press has said this in so many words!
The Mumbai and the Indian Police has been known for keeping informers, ex-militants and Pakistani spies in illegal confinement or on their payroll. And then planting them in situations where either Police or the corporate-politician-bureaucrat nexus or foreign powers or Hindutva forces have carried out attacks and bomb blasts. This happened on numerous occasions say, in 2006 when the RSS Headquarters in Nagpur were attacked allegedly by `terrorists’, who then died in an encounter with the Nagpur Police. It later turned out, and this was proved by Jusice Kondse Patil’s report on this issue and by Suresh Khairnar, a veteran socialist and human rights activist, that these `terrorists’ were in fact people who had been killed by a non-Maharashtrian Special Crime Branch Police in a fake encounter and then brought and placed before the RSS Headquarters. The Nagpur chief of Police in fact went on record to say that his Police actually did not engage in any encounter!
Now comes a report that Kasab was actually kidnapped by RAW officials in Nepal in 2006. In fact a PIL has been filed in a Pakistani court and the Times of India carried a report on this in its 17th December Mumbai edition.
In my last piece I had mentioned the Red Fort case. Indians, including some leaders of so-called secular parties are so ill informed that they do not even remember there was a Red Fort attack! They only know of the Parliamentary attack, which was again a fake drama staged by the Delhi Police–the best part is that our wily parliamentarians know this! That is why they did not turn up to commemorate the `martyrdom’ of Police personal who died defending the Parliament!

Kasab is a fake; the real terrorists who came to Mumbai wreaked their mayhem and went back safely–some of them, as testified by eye-witness near Nariman House were definitely Israeli. The main aim of the entire operaiton was to eliminate Karkare and to create something so big that the Malegaon blast investigation pales in comparison.
But Karkare killers and Hindutva forces had the backing it seems of Manmohan Singh. Why else would Advani meet Singh before 26th November on the issue of `torture’ of Praggya Singh? Has anyone heard of a leader of the opposition meeting the Prime Minister on such an issue?
Apparently a deal was struck between them; and remember Advani could not have met Singh like this, without American mediation.
Was Sonia in the knowhow? Probably not–the Sonia angle is very important–there are reports that probably she was unaware of what happened on 26th November and that depite throwing in her lot with the Manmohan Singh lobby on other issues, she saw that their plan included upstaging her!
Karkare’s killing is the result of the larger fight between Hindutva-pro-Israeli, pro-American lobby which is now deeply entrenched in India and whatever is left of Congress’ old legacy in the establishment. Both these factions often unite, as they did against the Left on the nuclear deal issue. But the `old legacy’ faction does not realize that pro-US, pro-Israel lobby is planning to overthrow it–and maybe sink Sonia and Rahul as well!

WHAT IS THE BIGGEST FAILURE OF THE CURRENT ESTABLISHMENT? NOT THAT THERE WERE SECURITY LAPSES AND INTELLIGENCE FAILURE–THE BIGGEST FAILURE IS THAT THEY WERE NOT ABLE TO COOK UP A FALSE STORY ABOUT A TERRORIST ATTACK–THEY FAILED TO ESTABLISH A CONVINCING COVER-UP! EVERYONE WHO HAS SUPPORTED THE POLICE THEORY HAS TO ANSWER. THE VENGEANCE OF THE INDIAN PEOPLE WILL BE UPON YOU.

AND NOW COMES THE STARTLING FACT–KARKARE WAS KILLED BY A 9 MM BULLET–WHICH COULD NOT HAVE COME FROM AK-47 OR 56! WHERE IS HIS POST-PARTUM REPORT?

Amaresh Misra

Times of India Report

Posted by: informer | December 20, 2008

Malegaon probe continues without Hemant Karkare

Ruhi Khan, Dharmesh Thakkar
Saturday, December 20, 2008 8:23 AM (Mumbai)

The probe into the Malegaon blast is now at a critical stage. With Anti-Terror Squad chief Hemant Karkare gone and R R Patil out of office, investigators fear they may not get the kind of support they once did.

Senior officers are not speaking about their concerns in public but say they are determined to make sure that Karkare’s hardwork sees results.

“We are in the final stages of our investigations,” said Sukhwinder Singh, Additional Commissioner of Police, ATS.

The Mumbai Crime Branch is investigating the 26/11 attacks. And the ATS team is slowly building evidence against the 11 arrested in the Malegaon blasts case.

In a statement to the ATS, Ajay Rahirkar, treasurer of Abhinav Bharat, has said he transferred Rs 10 lakh from the outfit to fund the blasts.

Gaurav Sharma, a hotel clerk from Indore, has also told them that Ajay Rahirkar booked two rooms from August 1 to 3. The rooms were booked in the names of Ajay Rahirkar, H V Apte, and one Colonel P S Rao Balwant.

Another accused Rakesh Dhawde has allegedly admitted that he was responsible for the arms and explosive training in Sinhagad. The CBI is investigating his involvement in the Nanded blasts on the same premise.

Jitendra Sharma, an auto repair shop owner from Indore, has told investigators that the bike used in Malegaon blasts was brought to his workshop by Ramji Kalsagre.

The ATS is now on the hunt for Kalsagre and Sandeep Dangle — the alleged planters of the bomb who are crucial pieces in the Malegaon puzzle.

Source: http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/ndtv/mumbaiterrorstrike/Story.aspx?ID=NEWEN20080077149&type=News

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