WHILE CROSS-EXAMINING the police officer who claimed to have arrested 26/11 accused Zabiuddin Ansari in New Delhi in 2012, the defence attempted to punch holes in the prosecution’s claims by suggesting that he was deported from Saudi Arabia. On Monday, advocate Wahab Khan asked the then assistant commissioner of police (ACP), if he had investigated into how Ansari came to India. The prosecution claims that Ansari was arrested when he was loitering outside the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi and he was found in possession of a Pakistani passport and identity cards. Khan first asked the prosecution witness to peruse the original passport he had claimed to have seized from Ansari. He then asked if it had any visa stamps. On being told that it didn’t, Khan asked him how could he have come to India without a visa.
“I interrogated the accused on how he came to India but he did not cooperate,” the witness told the court. On being asked by Khan if the witness, as one of the investigators, had written to immigration authorities on how Ansari had entered India or the government of Pakistan to check the genuineness of the passport, the witness told the court that he would have to verify it in the case files. The court has directed the witness to appear before it with all relevant documents when he is called for further cross-examination.
The witness was also asked about two other officials, who assisted him in the Delhi police special cell. Khan suggested that the two officials had gone to Dammam in Saudi Arabia to bring Ansari along with them to India. He questioned the witness on whether the two officers were present in office days prior to June 21, 2012, when Ansari was shown as arrested.
The witness said he could not recollect. The defence had recently sought documents including a list of the passengers on the Jet Airways flight from Saudi Arabia to India on that day, passengers who cleared immigration, travel documents claimed to have been issued by the Ministry of External Affairs. While the court has allowed the plea, the documents are yet to be submitted. Ansari is facing trial for the November 26, 2008 attack in Mumbai.