In a startling revelation, a former top Pakistani security official, Tariq Khosa, has admitted that the November 26, 2008 Mumbai terror attack was launched from the Pakistani soil. The admission was made in an exclusive opinion piece by him in the Pakistani newspaper, Dawn.
Khosa, former director-general of the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA), was entrusted with the probe of the 26/11 terror attacks. In the context of Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif and his Indian counterpart Narendra Modi agreeing in Russia’s Ufa recently, that they are “prepared to discuss all outstanding issues”, the exposure can give a new twist to the already tumultuous Indo-Pak relations.
Saying that “Pakistan has to deal with the Mumbai mayhem, planned and launched from its soil”, the former DG-FIA also revealed certain other “facts” regarding the orchestration of the attacks.
After repeated denials by Pakistan, Khosa has also finally spilled the beans with respect to Ajmal Kasab’s nationality, admitting that the now executed militant was a Pakistani national. “Ajmal Kasab was a Pakistani national, whose place of residence and initial schooling, as well as his joining a banned militant organisation was established by the investigators”, he said.
Going into details, Khosa also revealed that the 10 terrorists who launched the deadly strikes on the night of November 26, 2008 were from the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and that they were trained near Thatta in Sindh. “The training camp was identified and secured by the investigators. The casings of the explosive devices used in Mumbai were recovered from this training camp and duly matched”, Khosa said.
Revealing that the fishing trawler used by the militants to set sail from Karachi was traced back to Pakistan, he said, “The fishing trawler used by the terrorists for hijacking an Indian trawler in which they sailed to Mumbai, was brought back to harbour, then painted and concealed. It was recovered by the investigators and connected to the accused.”
Khosa also imparted that the control room used for instructing the militants before and during the strikes was set up in Karachi, Pakistan. Talking about the arrests in the case, Khosa said, “The alleged commander and his deputies were identified and arrested… a couple of foreign-based financiers and facilitators were (also) arrested and brought to face trial”.
In his article, Khosa called upon the Pakistani establishment to face the truth and admit mistakes. “The entire state security apparatus must ensure that the perpetrators and masterminds of the ghastly terror attacks are brought to justice. The case has lingered on for far too long. Dilatory tactics by the defendants, frequent change of trial judges, and assassination of the case prosecutor as well as retracting from original testimony by some key witnesses have been serious setbacks for the prosecutors,” he wrote, concluding his piece with the question, “Are we as a nation prepared to muster the courage to face uncomfortable truths and combat the demons of militancy that haunt our land?”