In a surprise development, the US on Tuesday said it has taken no decision to provide Indian investigators direct access to Pakistani-American David Headley, who has confessed to plotting the Mumbai terror attacks.
Four days after US Assistant Secretary of State for South Asia Robert Blake publicly stated here that the Indian investigators will have access to Headley, American Ambassador Timothy J Roemer said in a statement that "no decision on direct access for India to David Headley has been made."
Following Blake's statement and a telephonic discussion with US Attorney General and Head of the Department of Justice Eric Holder, Home Minister P Chidambaram had directed NIA and other agencies concerned in the case to quickly prepare documents necessary to start a judicial proceeding in which Indian authorities could require Headley to answer questions and to testify.
Sources in the home ministry had yesterday said India is likely to send a team of investigators in April to question 49-year old Headley. Roemer's remarks also come amid reports that Pakistan was seeking access to Headley.
"As the Assistant Secretary indicated, the US is committed to full information sharing in our counter terror partnership and, in fact, in this case we have provided substantial information to the Government of India and we will continue to do so. "However, no decision on direct access for India to David Headley has been made. The US Department of Justice will work with the Government of India regarding the modalities of such cooperation," Roemer said.