Deputy Prime Minister Lal Kishenchand Advani has confirmed that Anees Ibrahim, one of the main accused in the Mumbai bomb blasts case, has been arrested by the UAE police in Dubai.
"Central Bureau of Investigation Director P C Sharma has informed me about the arrest and we have already dispatched a CBI team to Dubai to bring Anees, who is mafia don Dawood Ibrahim's brother, to Delhi. We are hopeful that he would be extradited to India to stand trail for the heinous offences committed by him," Advani told a private television network in Gujarat where is camping to canvass for the BJP in the Gujarat elections.
According to top officials in the ministry of home affairs, the mood in government circles is upbeat as the UAE had earlier extradited Aftab Ansari, believed to be involved in the attack on the American Centre in Kolkata.
According to these sources, Anees Ibrahim had a Pakistani passport with him at the time of his arrest.
This, they believe, could create problems as Anees Ibrahim would be treated as a Pakistani citizen and Pakistan is unlikely to ask for his extradition knowing very well that he figures high in the list of wanted criminals that was handed over by India to the Pakistani government last year.
Two CBI officials (Additional DGP Vijay Shukla and Superintendent of Police Om Prakash Chatwal) would be leaving for the UAE with the evidence that the agency has against Anees. Chatwal is part of the Special Task Force dealing with the Mumbai bomb blasts case.
The evidence includes confessions by Saleem Kurla, Mohammad Hanif and Usman Malkhan, all of who claimed that Anees had arranged for their arms training in Pakistan. All three are believed to have been involved in the serial bomb blasts, which shook Mumbai in 1993.
Sanjay Dutt had also confessed to getting some arms, during the post-Babri masjid demolition communal riots, through Anees, though the actor later retracted his confession.