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'LeT did not want the Pak link cropping up'

Vicky Nanjappa | January 07, 2009 12:45 IST
Last Updated: January 07, 2009 14:20 IST

"India can understand only one language and that is the language of jihad."

Thus said Zaki-ur-Rehman Laqvi, the Lashkar-e-Tayiba [Images] chief, to the Mumbai attackers while they underwent training in Pakistan.

Though the main aim of both the LeT and the Inter-Services Intelligence was to strike at India and create maximum destruction, under no circumstances did they want a Pakistan link cropping up in the end.

During the three days siege of Mumbai [Images], the Lashkar handler, Abu Hamza who was sitting in Pakistan got wind of the fact that Ajmal Kasab [Images] had been apprehended by the police. The conversation between Hamza and Zarar Shah with the Mumbai attackers suggests that they wanted to ensure that Kasab was released.

Both Hamza and Shah kept in regular touch with the attackers in Nariman House which was used as the terror control room during the operation.

Nasir, a resident of Faizalbad and Imran a.k.a Abu Akasha, a resident of Multan, the two men at the Nariman House, took messages from the handlers in Pakistan and passed it on to the men who were at the Taj and the Trident.

IB sources told that the conversation makes it clear that the LeT did not want to leave behind a single piece of evidence that would link the attack to Pakistan. They realised that Kasab had been apprehended. The handlers immediately contacted the men at the Nariman House and ordered them not to kill the hostages immediately. Instead they told them to keep them alive and make a demand to release Kasab as they realized that a man in custody would only strengthen the Pakistan link to the attack.

The handlers were heard telling the Nariman House attackers to make a demand to the Indian authorities to release Kasab immediately and leave him with them at the Nariman House.

However both Nasir and Akasha could not make the demand as they were engaged in a bloody battle with the security agencies. They then told the handlers that they were unable to make the demand and also informed them that they had the hostages with them. This is when the handlers gave up on their demand to release Kasab and ordered, "Kill them all."

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