Home/ News / Mumbai terror attack: ‘Great victory for India’ Ujjwal Nikam on US court's nod for extradition of Tahawwur Rana

Senior lawyer Ujjwal Nikam, the special public prosecutor in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks case has called the US court's approval for extradition of the case accused Pakistani-origin Canadian businessman Tahawwur Rana to India a great victory.

While speaking to news agency ANI, Ujjwal Nikam "The order of the American court extraditing Tahawwur Rana (26/11 Mumbai terror attack accused) is a great victory for India. It is for the first time according to my knowledge, American govt has heavily relied upon Indian investigation agency's evidence...""

"I'm glad that when I was conducting the trial against one of the Indian accused, Abu Jindal, who was also in the control room which was constituted in Pakistan during the terror attack of 26 November on Mumbai, David Hadley before the attack had visited Mumbai. After the attack had visited Mumbai, he had taken the photographs and he handed over the photographs of the targeted places to the Lashkar-e-Taiba," he added.

On June 10, 2020, India had filed a complaint seeking the provisional arrest of 62-year-old Rana with a view towards extradition.

The Biden Administration had supported and approved the extradition of Rana to India. A total of 166 people, including six Americans, were killed in the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks in which 10 Pakistani terrorists laid a more than 60-hour siege from the night of November 26, attacking and killing people at iconic and vital locations of the city.

Tahawwur Rana has been accused by the Indian government of participating in the planning and execution of the Lashkar terrorist attacks in Mumbai by collaborating with his childhood buddy David Coleman Headley, also known as "Daood Gilani," and others.

The US court has consented to the Indian request, through the US Government, for the extradition of Rana to India where he is sought for his involvement in the 2008 Mumbai terror attack.

"The Court has reviewed and considered all of the documents submitted in support of and in opposition to the Request, and has considered the arguments presented at the hearing," Judge Jacqueline Chooljian, US Magistrate Judge of the US District Court Central District of California, said in a 48-page court order dated May 16, which was released Wednesday. 

There is an extradition treaty in place between India and the United States. The judge ruled that the extradition of Rana to India is fully under the jurisdiction of the treaty. 

Rana was arrested in the US on an extradition request by India for his role in these attacks. India's National Investigation Agency (NIA) is conducting a probing into his role in the 26/11 attacks carried out by Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists in 2008. 

The NIA has said it is ready to initiate proceedings to bring him to India through diplomatic channels. Ajmal Kasab, the lone surviving Pakistani gunman in the Mumbai carnage in which 166 persons were killed, was awarded death sentence by a special Mumbai court in 2010 for the mass murders and waging a war against India. He was hanged to death at the Yerwada jail in Maharashtra's Pune city in November 2012.

(With inputs from agencies)

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Updated: 18 May 2023, 12:36 PM IST
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