200 witnesses listed in 26/11 chargesheet

25 02 2009

Source: NDTV

Rashmi Rajput
Wednesday, February 25, 2009 9:19 AM (Mumbai)

The 26/11 case stands on a huge body of evidence and most importantly on eyewitnesses who saw the terrorists unleash the carnage.

The list includes police officers who were part of the 26/11 operation, Indian survivors from the Taj, Trident and Nariman House, Railway employees at the CST station who were present there on that fateful day, staff at the GT and Cama Hospitals, forensic experts , press photographers who clicked images of the terrorists, Vinod Masani — the owner of MV Kuber on which the terrorists travelled to Mumbai and Harish Sharan, the owner of the Skoda car hijacked by Qasab on night of 26/11.

The chargesheet will also include statements of the US-based CallPhonix employees — the company through which the and handlers routed their calls using VOIP.

“We got information that the terrorist were at the terrace of Cama hospital. So we took one of our teams since we were familiar with the topography,” Additional Commissioner of Police, Crime Deven Bharati said.

These men are among the 200 witnesses who have been listed in Mumbai police’s chargesheet and will play a key role in nailing Ajmal Amir Qasab.

“When I got information, I went with my team and asked the neighbours to vacate the premises,” said Ishaq Bhagwan, Assistant Commissioner of Police.

These were ordinary citizens — policemen, hotel employees of the Taj and Trident and hospital staff among others whose statements are vital to the case.

“I saw these remorseless young guys. And at that time our only priority was to save people’s life. So, we continued with the announcements,” said V D Zende, an announcer at Mumbai’s CST station.

The chargesheet is believed to be running into 10,000 pages and will include the detail accounts of these eyewitnesses.

“It was somewhere around 9.30 when I heard a loud explosion, loud sound of gunfire and grenade when I saw the terrorists. They were two young boys in backpack and looked like collegeans. As soon as the constables fired, they returned fire. It was then I clicked the pictures. I just kept shooting. I was trailing to get more. Everybody praised me next day but I just did my job,” said Sabistan D’souza, a press photographer.

FBI officials are also likely to be summoned as witnesses because they have helped the Mumbai police gather key forensic and technical evidence. But sources say they may depose through videoconference once the trial begins.

5,000 pages of Kasab charges in court today

By Our Correspondent

Mumbai

Feb. 24: An entire chargesheet, of over 5,000 pages, will be translated into Urdu to be given to Ajmal Amir Kasab, the only Pakistani terrorist captured alive during the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.

While the original chargesheet, more than 5,000 pages, will be filed in court by crime branch officials on Wednesday, the translated version will be given to Kasab after a few days.

“We shall be giving him a chargesheet translated into Urdu soon,” confirmed Mr Deven Bharti, additional commissioner of police, crime.

Investigators are leaving nothing to chance and have even booked Kasab for entering the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus (CST) without a railway ticket. “Kasab has been booked under various acts, including the Arms Act, Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, Explosives Act, Customs Act, waging war against the country and other various sections of the Railway Act. Entering the railway premises without a proper ticket is also one among the various offences registered against him,” said joint commissioner of police (crime) Rakesh Maria.

The crime branch will file a chargesheet clubbing all the 12 cases registered against the 10 terrorists on Wednesday. This will be presented in the Esplanade court, which is expected to direct it to the sessions court. The sessions court will in turn mark it to the special court constituted to conduct the trial.

The police is, however, tight-lipped regarding whether Kasab would be present in court on Wednesday. “We shall be filing the chargesheet on Wednesday. However, we have yet not decided whether to produce Kasab. We have to take into account several security factors. We shall take a call on it by Tuesday night,” said Mr Rakesh Maria.

According to a senior crime branch officer, the chargesheet shall answer all the 30 questions raised by Pakistan after they registered an offence against Kasab. The chargesheet shall also contain the statements of several FBI officers whose statements were recorded by a three-member team that visited the US a fortnight ago. “The officers shall depose in court through video-conference when the court seeks it,” he said. A total of over 200 eyewitness accounts shall be part of the chargesheet.

The government has appointed Justice M.L. Tahiliyani as the special judge for the 26/11 terror attacks trial. While special public prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam shall represent the prosecution, Kasab is yet to appoint a lawyer to represent him.

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US think-tank warns of more attacks on city

3 02 2009

3 Feb 2009, 0234 hrs IST,
S Balakrishnan, TNN :

MUMBAI: The Rand Corporation, a highly-respected US think-tank, has warned of more terror strikes in India in the “forseeable future”. It has also stated that the 26/11 Mumbai attack had “local assistance”. TOI was the first to report about the Lashkar-e-Taiba “fidayeens” getting local support to carry out their operation. But the investigators are still to explore the local angle.
The warning of future attacks came in the course of a testimony given by Brian Jenkins of the corporation before the US senate committee on homeland security and government affairs on January 28. It is titled `Lessons learned from the Mumbai attacks’.
Jenkins said India will continued to face a serious jihadi terrorist threat from Pakistan-based terrorist groups. “India lacks military options that have strategic-level effects without a significant risk of a military response by Pakistan. Neither the Indian or US policy is likely to be able to reduce that threat significantly in the short to medium-term. Most likely, the threat will continue to grow. Other extremists in India will inevitably find inspiration and instruction from the Mumbai attacks,” he observed.
Apart from targeting the high-profile Taj and Trident hotels, which have a large number of foreigners, the 26/11 attackers also targeted ordinary people at CST rail terminus, Jews at Nariman Point and foreigners at Leopold Cafe.
Jenkins said, terrorists designed the Mumbai attack to do what the authorities were not expecting. “There were no truck bombs or people attempting to smuggle bombs onto trains, as in previous attacks. Since attacks against high-profile soft targets are relatively easy and cheap to mount, such institutions will remain targets of future attacks. Many of India’s older symbolic buildings were not built with security considerations in mind or are at exposed locations.
Indian security agencies have taken Jenkin’s analysis seriously and are urging the government to take appropriate measures.





Images: Terrorists pictures released

10 12 2008


Courtesy : Rediff

Images: Terrorists pictures released

December 09, 2008

If anyone needs a proof that who unleashed terror in Mumbai, here are the pictures.

The Mumbai police on Tuesday released 8 out of the 10 photographs of the terrorists involved in the Mumbai terror attack. Besides, the names of terrorists and their home town were also given. While Ajmal Kasab’s picture has already been already released, one terrorist picture is not available yet.

All terrorists were from Pakistan and they were all in 20-28 age group. Shoaib aged 20, the man who attacked the Taj was the youngest while Nasir, 28, who attacked the Nariman House, was the eldest.

Terrorists at the Taj:
Shoaib, a.k.a Soaib- Narowal Sialkot; Hafeez Arshad, a.k.a Abdul Rehman Bada- Multan; Javed, a.k.a Abu Ali- Okara; Nazeer, a.k.a Abu Umer- Faizalabad

At the Nariman House:
Nasir- Faizalabad; Babbar Imran, a.k.a, Abu Akasha- Multan;

At the CST
Mohammed Ajmal Amir Kasab- Okara; Abu Ismail- Dera Ismail Khan

Terrorists at the Oberoi-Trident
Abdul Rehman, a.k.a Abdul Rehman Chota- Multan; Fahadullah, a.k.a Abu Fahad- Okara





Stand up and people will join you

2 12 2008

Shibu Thomas I TNN

December 20: IIT-Bombay students will organise a free rock concert and dedicate it to terror victims. Finnish band Ensiferum will perform on Day One of Mood Indigo on the Powai campus

Mumbai: “I’m mad as hell and I won’t take it anymore,’’ filmmaker Suparn Verma (33), wrote in his blog post on Saturday morning , the day NSG commandos ended the 60-hour standoff with terrorists.
Verma ended his blog saying he will maintain a vigil outside Taj Mahal hotel at 6 pm on on December 3. Within an hour, a reader put in a comment saying he will join him.
A trickle of messages soon became a roaring stream as forums and communities cropped up on social networking sites and text messages were sent thick and fast asking people to gather for the candlelight march on Wednesday outside Mumbai’s iconic hotel.
“Something just snapped in me,’’ says Verma, adding that he is no torch-bearing activist but is just venting his frustration with the political class. “We all talk about doing something. Maybe it’s time you stand up and people will join you.’’
Similar feelings motivated Bandra resident and freelance visual jockey Satyan Bajaj (25) to create a community for a march at the amphitheatre on Carter Road. “We are tried of
communal and vote bank politics and want peace,’’ says Bajaj. More than a 100 people turned up on Monday evening to light candles.
With hardly any experience of staging events of this magnitude, the organisers are relying on tools they and their audiences are familiar with—social networking sites, websites and mobile text messages.
One click of the forward button and information passes on to scores of inboxes. “We don’t have the financial resources to print pamphlets, book venues or put out advertisements. Networking sites are common platforms that help garner support,’’ says Verma.

Youths, angry with the political class irrespective of their affiliations, have declared it a “leaderless movement’’. And the internet has emerged as a rallying point to connect likeminded youngsters. Some 500-odd members of Facebook have confirmed that they will participate in Wednesday’s walk.
Seven Bungalows resident Francis D’Costa, a brand consultant, plans to go with his entire office for the 3/12 walk.
“Not voting, armchair activism and being cynical will not help if all we do is blame the system,’’ says D’Costa. “I pay my taxes without fail and I have the right as a citizen of this country to walk on Cola
ba Causeway fearlessly, not thinking that a gun-toting terrorist may be lurking around,’’ adds D’Costa, who has forwarded the message to all contacts on his cellphone.
Another community on the walk created by Urvashi Poddar talks about the prevailing anger. “If the terrorists think their doings have caused trauma, then they are right… but this act has also caused something in all of us today that will change things forever—no one has ever been this angry before. Never before has there been such an opportunity to unite, to gather, to protest, to cry out and to retaliate,’’ it says.
While ideas ranging from a civil disobedience movement to refusal to pay taxes and demands of statehood for Mumbai and withdrawal of security to politicians are doing the rounds, the organisers are hoping this rage does not remain the “flavour of the week”.
For now, the intention is to make a statement. “Our leaders only understand politics of vote bank,’’ says Verma. “They have to see us and recognise that there is this large mass of people that wants answers and is demanding accountability.’’

MAKING A STATEMENT

December 3: Walk for peace outside Taj Mahal hotel at 6 pm

December 4: St Xavier’s College will hold a memorial prayer service at 5.30 pm to pay respect to those who lost their lives

December 6: Loksatta movement will feature a peaceful march demanding reforms at 3 pm, Gateway of India





Terror attacks in Mumbai; six foreigners among 101 dead

27 11 2008

27 Nov 2008 audio
NEW DELHI/MUMBAI: At least 101 people have been killed in attacks by gunmen in Mumbai, police said on Thursday. ( Watch

Terror attacks in Mumbai

Army personnel take position at the Gateway of India that stands in front of Taj Hotel in Mumbai. (Reuters Photo)

)

“At least six foreigners have been killed and the death figure has gone up to 101 now,” Ramesh Tayde, a senior police officer told from Mumbai’s control room.

In one of the most violent terror attacks on Indian soil, Mumbai came under an unprecedented night attack as terrorists used heavy machine guns, including AK-47s, and grenades to strike at the city’s most high-profile targets — the hyper-busy CST (formerly VT) rail terminus; the landmark Taj Hotel at the Gateway and the luxury Oberoi Trident at Nariman Point; the domestic airport at Santa Cruz; the Cama and GT hospitals near CST; the Metro Adlabs multiplex and Mazgaon Dockyard — killing at least 101 and sending hundreds of injured to hospital, according to latest reports. ( Watch )

The attacks have taken a tragic toll on the city’s top police brass: The high-profile chief of the anti-terror squad Hemant Karkare was killed; Mumbai’s additional commissioner of police (east) Ashok Kamte was gunned down outside the Metro; and celebrated encounter specialist Vijay Salaskar was also killed. ( Watch )

The attacks appeared to be aimed at getting international attention as the terrorists took upto 40 British nationals and other foreigners hostage. The chairman of Hindustan Unilever Harish Manwani and CEO of the company Nitin Paranjpe were among the guests trapped at the Oberoi. All the internal board members of the multinational giant were reported to be holed up in the Oberoi hotel.

Two terrorists were reported holed up inside the Oberoi Hotel. Fresh firing has been reported at Oberoi and Army has entered the hotel to flush out the terrorists.

An unknown outfit, Deccan Mujahideen, has sent an email to news organizations claiming that it carried out the Mumbai attacks. ( Watch )

The Army and Navy in Mumbai were put on alert. 65 Army commandos and 200 NSG commandos were being rushed to Mumbai, Home Minister Shivraj Patil said.

The Navy commandos too have been asked to assist the police. Special secretary M L Kumawat is in constant touch with the state police.

Some media reports attributed the attack to Lashkar-e-Taiba. There were also unconfirmed reports that some of the terrorists came in by sea. A boat laden with explosives was recovered later at night off the Gateway of India.

Well after midnight, sources said two of the terrorists were shot and wounded at Girgaum in south Mumbai. The two were driving in a commandeered silver-coloured Skoda car. Earlier, these men had sprayed bullets from a police Bolero, outside the Metro Adlabs multiplex.

The attacks occurred at the busiest places. Besides hotels and hospitals, terrorists struck at railway stations, Crawford Market, Wadi Bunder and on the Western Express Highway near the airport. Several of these places are within a one-km radius of the commissioner of police’s office.

“This is definitely a terrorist strike. Seven places have been attacked with automatic weapons and grenades. Terrorists are still holed up in three locations Taj and Oberoi hotels and GT Hospital. Encounters are on at all three places,” said Maharashtra DGP A N Roy.

St George’s Hospital and G T Hospital were said to have received 75 bodies and more than 250 injured people, additional municipal commissioner R A Rajeev said. Bombay Hospital got two bodies and 30 injured people were admitted there; Cooper Hospital, Vile Parle, got three dismembered bodies.

Three of the deaths occurred inside the Taj and one G T Hospital attendant died in a shootout inside the hospital. There were reports of people cowering under tables and chairs at both the Taj as well as G T Hospital.

Metro Junction resident Manoj Goel said: “My brother, Manish, died in the firing at Colaba’s Hamaal Galli.” Cops fired back at the men — probably from one of the Lashkar groups, dressed in black and with backpacks and SRPF, Crime Branch, ATS and teams of military commandos were summoned to the spot. Train services at CST were suspended and all roads leading to and from south Mumbai were blockaded.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh cut short his Kerala visit and was returning to Mumbai. He described the situation in Mumbai as “very serious”. ( Watch )

Deshmukh promised “stringent action” against the assailants but the mood across Mumbai was not so optimistic.

There were reports of firing around several landmark buildings in the Colaba-Nariman Point area, including the Taj hotel, Oberoi and other tourist attractions and pubs like Leopold’s. The top floor of Oberoi was said to be on fire amid reports of blasts in the area and blood-smeared bodies were being brought out of the Taj lobby.

Terrorists were said to be holed up at the Taj as well as G T Hospital and cops scampered to cordon off these places. A white flag was seen fluttering from an Oberoi Hotel window around 11.20 pm, where a blast was said to have occurred.

The blast on the Western Express Highway — near Centaur Hotel outside the airport — occurred in a taxi, deputy commissioner of police Nissar Tamboli said.

The firing and bombing started close to the Gateway of India. The gunbattle then moved on towards CST and raged on for over an hour from 10 pm, sending commuters running out of the station.

The assailants also fired into the crowd at CST and people on the trains and then ran out of the station themselves and into neighbouring buildings, including Cama Hospital, after being challenged by cops.

SRPF personnel then entered the iconic BMC building — just opposite CST — to take aim at the assailants, BMC commissioner Jairaj Phatak said. “We fear some of the assailants are still inside the station and we want to catch them if they come out,” a police official said.

Vikhroli police station senior inspector Habib Ansari was on his way to work from his Colaba home when he saw two armed men, with sophisticated weaponry, trying to run into bylanes near the Gateway of India.”I rushed back to Colaba and all policemen, including GRP and RPF personnel, were called up,” he added.