LeT surveyed 100 targets, Islamic terrorist Headley covered almost one-third
Posted by jagoindia on July 2, 2010
Jun 20 2010
Sketchy details are emerging from the seven-day access that a team from the National Investigating Agency (NIA) got to Lashkar-e-Toiba operative David Coleman Headley last week.
While non-disclosure of precise details of the almost 40 hours of interrogation conducted at an unspecified location in Chicago was a precondition for the access, the NIA team has returned to the Capital and has briefed top government officials. A formal report on the revelations made by the LeT’s globetrotting operative who conducted surveillance of the 26/11targets is expected to be prepared by the NIA shortly.
Headley is understood to have emphasised that around 100 targets in India have been identified, listed, surveyed and photographed by different agents, including himself. He said he did not know the identities and nationalities of other agents enlisted for reconnaissance since his “handlers” in Pakistan were careful not to reveal the details.
Headley has reportedly confessed to having done videography and photography of around 30 of these targets in several Indian cities during his nine visits to the country between 2006-2009. These include the 26/11 targets for which he said he had done a detailed survey, along with the identification of landing points and escape routes to be used by the 10 trained terrorists.
Officials in the Home Ministry said that while members of the NIA team did not either tape or videograph the interrogation sessions (they only took notes), this may have been done by US authorities in Chicago and that if required, the tapes could be requested for at a later stage.
During his interrogation, Headley is believed to have revealed more LeT targets than those already shared by the American agencies with their Indian counterparts. These targets include the residence of the Vice President as well as North Block, South Block and the Defence Headquarters in New Delhi.
Besides these targets, sources said, Headley has confirmed his reconnaissance of Chabad houses in Pune, Pushkar, Goa and Mumbai though he said he was not aware of the German Bakery in Pune being a target.
Headley’s interrogation sessions resulted in reconfirmation of some aspects of the probe the NIA had earlier conducted including the identities of his friends in Mumbai. He admitted to have dated a woman who runs a bakery in South Mumbai (The Indian Express, January 27, 2010) and that he had used his friends such as Rahul Bhatt and Vilas Varak, trainers in the gym he frequented in Mumbai, as useful “covers” to roam around freely in hotels and malls in the city. They were among the 200 persons the NIA questioned prior to travelling to Chicago and according to Headley himself, none of them were aware of the sinister design of his visits to India.