Bilal Ahmad Kawa, an alleged Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) operative and an accused in the 2000 Red Fort terror attack, was arrested from Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGIA) on Wednesday evening. Police said the bank account of the 37-year-old was allegedly used in the transaction of hawala money for terror operations at Red Fort as well as in Kashmir.
On December 22, 2000, three Indian Army personnel were killed in indiscriminate firing at Red Fort. While at least 11 people — including mastermind Mohammad Arif from Pakistan’s Abbottabad — have been convicted in the case, Kawa was absconding.
DCP (Special Cell) P S Kushwaha said the arrest was made by a joint team of Gujarat Anti-Terror Squad and Delhi Police’s Special Cell. Police sources said the Gujarat ATS received a tip-off that Kawa would be on a flight to Delhi. On the basis of the information, the joint team nabbed him from the airport just after he landed.
During interrogation, Kawa reportedly told police that over the last 18 years, he changed his location frequently but had been living in Kashmir for the time being. Sources said he was on his way to meet his brother in Delhi.
Kushwaha, however, said they are yet to verify his claims.
During investigation into the 2000 attack, Delhi Police had found that Rs 29.5 lakh was allegedly transferred to Kawa’s bank account.
Investigation had also revealed that Arif had deposited the money — allegedly used in funding the Red Fort attack and was also sent to Kashmir for militancy — in his account.
Police said Arif used to send the money through an account he had opened at a private bank branch in Connaught Place in July 2000. Police said the money was transferred to Kawa’s account between July and November, 2000.