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What all terrorists do before final assault?
November 29, 2008 16:01 IST
The militants, who entered into Mumbai by boats to carry out probably the worst terror attack on India, began their killing spree in the high seas where they killed five fishermen who're "missing" since last week.
The militants killed and thrown off-board four members of Indian fishing trawler 'Kuber' soon after they had hijacked it, while the fifth person, identified as Balwant Tandel, was beheaded as the vessel neared the Mumbai shores, sources said.
In fact, the investigators are now corroborating the information they gathered with that of the version of the arrested Lashker-e-Taiba militant Ajmal Amin Kamal.
So far, it has emerged that Kamal, along with another 11 Lashker cadres, had sailed off the Karachi port city in a merchant vessel and got down at 10 nautical miles in Indian waters.
Kamal, who had been maintaining that they had used the fibre glass boats to reach Mumbai on Wednesday night, has now confessed that they also used a fishing trawler, which was reported to be "missing" after rough weather on November 18.
And after killing the five crew members, the militants docked the vessel at Sasool area and began their massacre with clear cut instructions from across the border that "no mercy needs to be shown".
Giving an insight into the Lashker's seas-warfare, he is said to have claimed that, along with other LeT operatives, they were trained in marine commando techniques on Mangla Dam, a reservoir stretching between Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) to Punjab in Pakistan.
In fact, Lashker chose the sea route to reach India's financial capital as the militant outfit was finding it increasingly difficult to sneak into the country through the Line-of-Control.
The militants' journey began in Lahore [Images] before they reached Karachi with strict instructions that they should not be talking to any fellow passengers or among themselves during the train journey to the port-city, the sources said.
After sailing in a merchant vessel from Karachi, they found the Indian vessel.
Subsequently, the dozen people split into at least five groups that created havoc in five-star hotels -- Taj and Trident. The terrorists were carrying dry fruits, suggesting they were prepared for a long-drawn battle.
Choice of targets -- Taj Mahal hotel [Images] and Oberoi � was given to them by a Lashker commander in Karachi before they sailed to carry out the attack as these two hotels were always frequented by foreigners, especially Britons and Americans due to its proximity to the Arabian Sea, the sources said.
The arrested militant claimed that Mumbai's Nariman House was selected as it was home to a large number of Israeli families and a Jewish prayer house, and was being frequented by Americans intelligence officials, the sources said.
Another suspect in providing the attackers logistical support was underworld don Dawood Ibrahim [Images], who is also suspected to be staying in Pakistan and enjoying local official support.
As investigations into the Mumbai attacks continued in full-swing, the United Nation's Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) has estimated that the Taliban [Images] has earned up to USD 470 million from the Afghan opium trade this year alone. The
money is being used to finance insurgency in Afghanistan and other parts of the globe.
The Taliban earned $50-70 million from imposing a 10 per cent charge, called 'ushr', on economic activities such as opium farming this year, and USD 200-400 million from levies on opium processing and heroin trafficking, the UNODC said in its 2008 Afghan opium survey.
The income does not include money the Taliban are believed to be making from exports of cannabis another widely produced Afghan crop.
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