Updated: February 20, 2020 12:26:36 pm
Former Mumbai Police Commissioner Rakesh Maria caused a flutter after he said in his autobiography that the November 2008 Mumbai terror attacks might have been blamed on Hindu terrorists. Official documents from the trial of Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, the only one of ten terrorists involved in the terror attacks to be captured alive, had revealed that the documents were given to the Pakistani terrorists to deceive investigators. Kasab was hanged in November 2012.
What Maria wrote
“If everything went according to plan, Kasab would have died as Chaudhari and the media would have blamed ‘Hindu terrorists’ for the attack,” Maria wrote in his autobiography titled ‘Let Me Say It Now’. Maria was heading the Mumbai Police crime branch when it was tasked with probing the 26/11 attack.
Maria also blamed the release of Kasab’s photograph after the terror attack on central agencies. “The Mumbai Police tried hard to not disclose any details to media fearing for the security,” he wrote. In the photograph, Kasab was seen wearing a red thread on his right wrist, which is believed to be a sacred Hindu thread.
In official documents related to the trial of Kasab, there is mention of the fake ID cards that were given to those involved in the attacks.
What the Mumbai Police said in its chargesheet
In its chargesheet that is available on the South Asia Terrorism Portal, the Mumbai Police had said that during their investigations it had been revealed that the men involved in the attacks that killed 166 and injured over 300 had carried “fake duplicate identity cards of Indian colleges to mislead the investigating agencies as to their true identities and nationality”.
“The investigating agency has been successful in recovering some of these from the terrorists,” the chargesheet noted.
In a table, the Mumbai Police then listed all the identity cards that had been found. While Kasab was listed as Bengaluru resident Samir Choudhary studying in one “Arunodaya Degree And P.G. College”, most of the others were listed as Hyderabad residents. One of the other terrorists was listed as a resident of Navi Delhi, and another was listed as a resident of Ahmedabad.
Bengaluru resident Usha Shreyas who owned the property which was listed as Kasab’s address even appeared before the trial court in 2009 to confirm that the plot was vacant at the time and the college didn’t exist.
What Mohammed Ajmal Kasab said in his confession
In the Supreme Court judgment sentencing Kasab to death, the court quotes from the Pakistani gunman’s confession made before a Mumbai magistrate soon after his arrest. In the confession, in which Kasab spoke about how they were chosen for the mission, training and more, he is said to have spoken about receiving the fake identity cards.
In the confession, Kasab said Ustad Abu Kafa had given them the ID cards with the fake Hindu names.
“Kafa told them that the ten (10) “Mujahedeens”, would be given ID cards with fake Hindu names and that they would go to Hindustan with those fake ID cards. On the way, they would also tie sacred threads around their wrists like Hindus do.”
“When Ismail asked about the need for ID cards and threads, Kafa replied that with those ID cards nobody could stop them and they would be easily successful in their mission. And the threads on their wrists would deceive the police,” the judgment noted.
After they were told about their targets, Kasab spoke about the fake identification cards that they were given.
“At that time, according to the plan, Kafa also gave all of them ID cards with their Hindu names. Kasab’s ID card showed him as Sameer Choudhary son of Dinesh Choudhary of Arunodaya Degree College, Bangalore. Ismail’s ID card described him as Naresh Verma son of Vilas Verma of Arunodaya Degree College, Hyderabad. All the ID cards were of Arunodaya College. Kasab listed the different fake Hindu names given to the rest of his colleagues,” the judgment says.
In the confession, Kasab speaks about how they were asked to keep the identity cards in their pockets before setting off. After they boarded the Indian fishing vessel MV Kuber and sailed towards Mumbai, it is mentioned again.
“On November 26, at 11.00 AM, according to plan, they tied red-yellow coloured threads around their wrists. Around 4 pm on that day they neared Bombay and its tall buildings came within into sight.”
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