Nov 27, 2008

India - Lashkar behind the attacks

Pankaj Vohra

Indian intelligence agencies seem to be convinced that the terrorist strikes in Mumbai were carried out by Pakistan based Lashkar-e-Taiyebba (Let). The outfit which was banned by Pakistan during Pervez Musharraf’s regime had got active some months ago and is functioning in close coordination with Al Qaeda and other groups working under the overall umbrella of the International Islamic Organisation.

The IIO is controlled by Osama Bin Laden and encourages close cooperation between various groups. .

Highly placed sources said that the LeT had held its annual congregation last week at its headquarters in Muridake near Lahore. Its chief Hafiz-ul-Saeed is believed to have spewed venom against India and resolved there to carry on strikes within this country. Based on inputs received from the meeting, one of the intelligence agencies had sent out an alert. For some reasons, the Maharashtra police did not respond to the alert at the ground level.

Sources said that contrary to claims made by Pakistani authorities, Saeed enjoyed government patronage. He had recently imported a bulletproof sedan from Saudi Arabia for which the customs duty was waived off.

The Indian intelligence agencies believe that after Musharraf’s exit, Pakistan’s current regime seems to have little control over the militant outfits operating out of that country. It is very evident from information received from the terrorist strikes that the militants were Punjabi-speaking men using phraseology commonly used only in West Punjab in Pakistan.

Sources said that other Indian cities have also been put on alert and more attacks by the LeT, which is upset over the success of elections in Kashmir. The heavy turnout there has irked the militants

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