Mumbai attacks: FBI quizzes lone surviving terrorist for 9 hours

Mumbai attacks: FBI quizzes lone surviving terrorist for 9 hours

Mumbai: The officials of Federal Bureau of Investigation grilled Mohammad Ajmal Amir Iman Kasab, the lone Lashker-e-Taiba terrorist involved in 26 November terror strikes, for over nine hours recently to ascertain about his role and handlers in Pakistan.

The FBI sleuths, who have now been camping in the metropolis for over three weeks, questioned Kasab, who is in the custody of Mumbai police, official sources said.

During the questioning session that lasted at a stretch for nine hours, the FBI sleuths asked the arrested Lashkar terrorist minor details about his native places even including the lanes and by-lanes of the area. Kasab hails from Ukkad area of Faridkot district in Pakistan.

Kasab was also asked to explain the area were his training took place besides the people who had trained him in arms as well as the people who brainwashed him, the sources said.

The 21-year-old Iman told his interrogators that he had started his career as a petty thief in Lahore, where he was staying with his brother after dropping out of school in 2000. Thereafter, he shuttled between his brothers home and his parent’s house till 2005.

He had a fight with his family members and left home to start work as a daily wager but later joined a small-time criminal gang. Here, he and one of his friends came across some Jamaat-ul-Dawa members while they were purchasing arms from a market in Rawalpindi.

After deliberating among themselves, Iman claims both of them decided to join the outfit thinking the jihad training would further their future life in crime.

During the training, the films on India’s alleged atrocities in Kashmir and fiery lectures by preachers, including Lashkar chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed, led him to believe the Lashkar’s cause was worth giving his life. Later, Lashkar commander Zaki-ur-Rahman Lakhvi promised that his family would be rewarded with Rs1.5 lakh for the sacrifice.

The FBI sleuths, with the help of his description, prepared some sketches of Kasab’s brain washers as well as his trainers besides marking the places on the maps, the sources said.

The FBI team came here on 1 December, after registering the case. As per the US laws, the FBI has to probe the death or torture of any American citizen outside the US and later submit a chargesheet. Six US nationals and at least one British national were killed by terrorists in this case.

The FBI has already taken DNA samples of all the nine Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists killed during the infamous Mumbai shootout case and also found that the integrated circuits used in the explosive devices were quite similar to those used in Afghanistan.

Sources associated with the investigation into the 26 November terror strikes in Mumbai said the DNA samples had been preserved by the western investigators and were ascertaining whether it matched with anyone in their data bank or has any relations with persons killed during its operations in Afghanistan.