Key handler of 26/11 Mumbai terror attack is arrested

Jindal, who taught Hindi to Pakistani terrorists, was apprehended by Interpol last week and handed over to Delhi Police

In a major breakthrough in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack, the Indian intelligence agencies have got the custody of Abu Jindal, one of the main handlers of the 10 terrorists involved in the ghastly terror attack that took place in 2008. Jindal, who was in Saudi Arabia for last few days, was apprehended by the Interpol last week and was handed over to Indian authorities. The 30-year-old hails from Beed district of Maharashtra.

According to sources in Delhi Police, Jindal was one of the main handlers of the 10 terrorist who took part in the attack and trained them in Hindi. He was one of the six people, belonging to Lashkar-e-Taiba and ISI, who was present in the control room in Karachi to monitor the siege in Mumbai. Muzammil and Azam Cheema are the other two names that have emerged from investigations. Even Ajmal Kasab, the lone terrorist arrested during the attack, mentioned Jindal

as somebody who taught them Hindi.

Sources involved with the investigation say that this is not the only case in which Jindal has been involved. The dreaded terrorist was looking after the Indian operation for Lashkar-e-Taiba and narrowly escaped arrest when in a 2006 operation of Aurangabad, 10 AK 47 and several kg RDX meant for a Lashkar operation were recovered and 19 people arrested. Jindal later fled to Pakistan. Jindal was also involved in the 2005 IISC terror attack in Bangalore and a pipe line blast in Hyderabad in which there was no casualty.

Sources also allege that Lashkar-e-Taiba found in Jindal an excellent motivator and handler than being a foot soldier. He served as an extremely important person in Lashkar’s operations by carrying out indoctrination and executing terror attacks deep inside the Indian hinterland. Intelligence agencies claim that the arrest of Jindal is a vital breakthrough in the investigation of 26/11 and the mystery behind the unknown voice recorded during the conversation between Lashkar terrorists and their handler in Pakistan has been solved.

What stunned the world during the audacious terror attack in Mumbai was the way the handlers were in touch with the terrorists all along the attack. During the attack, Jindal was heard telling Laskhar terrorists to convey to India that this attack was just a trailor and how the entire movie was yet to unfold. He was heard using typical Hindi words and urging the terrorists to conceal their Pakistani identities.

Jindal’s arrest, however, has also raised several uncomfortable questions. B Raman, former head of counter terrorism RAW, tweeted that on 12 February 2009, Pakistan internal minister had announced the arrest of one Abu Hamza and six others in relation to the 26/11 case. If he is the same man Delhi Police have arrested then how did he manage to go to Saudi Arabia? Was he then, along with six others, quietly released by the ISI? There was no response from the Indian agencies on this development.

Sources in Delhi Police are saying that Jindal would be kept in custody till 20 July, after which he will be handed over to the Mumbai Police. Jindal’s name cropped up after an Indian Mujahideen militant was arrested by Delhi Police special cell. Jindal is an expert in IED and a close associate of Lashkar militant Aslam Kashmiri, who was arrested in 2009. Jindal had gone to Saudi Arabia to tap Indian diaspora for recruitment.



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