Former director general of Punjab police Kanwar Pal Singh Gill, Minister of State for Non-Resident Indians Jagdish Tytler and Maninderjit Singh Bitta, chairman of the Anti-Terrorist Front, were on the hit-list of Jagtar Singh Hawara, chief of the Babbar Khalsa International who was arrested in New Delhi last week for allegedly masterminding the May 22 blasts at two Delhi theatres. Delhi Police Commissioner Dr K K Paul disclosed this in an exclusive conversation with rediff.com on Wednesday.
Hawara had escaped from Burail jail in Chandigarh along with three accomplices on January 21, 2004.
"We were not looking for him initially but once the Babbar Khalsa appeared in the investigation after the Delhi blasts we started looking for him. During his interrogation he named K P S Gill, Jagdish Tytler and Maninderjit Singh Bitta, besides some personalities from Punjab," Dr Paul said.
When asked to confirm if Hawara was planning to bring in a 'human bomb' from the United States to execute his diabolical plans, as some national dailies had reported, Dr Paul said the reports were partly true and partly imaginative. "We are in no position to confirm or deny them," he said.
Hawara's interrogation has alerted the Union home ministry and Punjab police who had claimed that the terrorist and his associates had crossed over to Pakistan. Instead, they discovered Hawara returned to his hometown Patiala after the jailbreak last year and was trying to reorganise the terror network. The role of some state police officers and politicians has also come under scrutiny.
Hawara had planned the murder of then Punjab chief minister Beant Singh in August 1995. The Central Bureau of Investigation had announced a reward of Rs 10 lakhs leading to the arrest of Hawara and his accomplices.