Mumbai/Nagpur: Prior to the terror strike on November 26, 2008, two unsuccessful attempts were made to attack Mumbai in September and October 2008. Pakistani American Lashkar-e-Toiba operative David Coleman Headley during his deposition in a Mumbai special court has said that the same set of men who attacked on 26/11 had come twice in previous months to carry out attacks. The men even used the same route through the sea to enter Mumbai.
Naming Hafiz Saeed for the first time, he said that the speeches of the Jammat-ud-Dawa chief motivated him to take up the cause. He was also shown Saeed’s picture by the court and Headley confirmed that he is the same person.
He also added that the goal of the Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) to support the people of Kashmir to fight Indian Army.
Headley also revealed that he visited India seven times before the 26/11 Mumbai attacks and once in 2009 after the attacks. Headley referred to 26/11 terror attacks mastermind Sajid Mir as his ‘colleague’ in the LeT. He has claimed that he was a “true follower” of the terror outfit.
Headley added that Sajid Mir had asked him to set up an office in India with a motive to build a cover up in India. Headley had taken a 5-year visa to set up his business in India.
Headley’s deposition is being considered crucial as he is expected to reveal details of the involvement of the Pakistan Army and its spy agency – ISI in the 26/11 attacks. Headley’s testimony is also expected to help bring to book 26/11 mastermind – Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed who is currently in Pakistan.
His testimony may also help India nail another 26/11 accused Abu Jundal who is facing trial in India.
Headley is joining the video conference from an undisclosed location from US. He is currently serving 35 years in prison in the US for his role in the Mumbai terror attacks.
Another key plotter Sayed Zabiuddin Ansari alias Abu Jundal is also present via video conferencing from Arthur road jail. Jundal is expected to move an application for transferring the case out of the court.