By Pramod Kumar in Organiser February 17, 2013

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HOW low can a Congress Minister fall for some votes? Beyond any limit. This is what Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde’s recent statement on ‘Hindu Terror’ proves. It also shows that a Congress Minister can utter any deadly lie against his own country, again for the minority votes. “The question is why the Government is silent if it has evidence against anybody. Stop denigrating the entire Hindu community, make the evidences public if you have any,” told senior BJP leader Dr Murli Manohar Joshi to Shinde on February 5 in New Delhi.

True to the fear, Shinde’s statement was quickly picked up by top terrorists sitting in Pakistan. JuD chief Hafeez Saeed and HuJI commander Iliyas Kashmiri on January 21, just next day of Shinde’s statement, demanded ban on RSS-BJP. They went on to demand that India be declared a terrorist state for promoting terrorism on its own soil. “Before linking saffron with terror Shinde Saheb should know the significance of saffron colour in Indian life. It symbolises our identity and by linking it with terror, you have linked the entire nation with terrorism. You have insulted not only the age old Hindu culture and traditions but also the entire nation,” said Dr Joshi while terming the statement as a plot to break the country. “We condemn the statement in strongest words and the Congress will have to face the consequences of it both inside and outside the Parliament,” he said.

Dr Joshi, who is also chairman of the Public Accounts Committee of Lok Sabha, said the Home Minister is deliberately ignoring vital facts on terror. He said a resolution of the United Nations Security Council Committee on Sanctions of June 2009 had said: “Arif Qasmani, chief coordinator of the Lashkar-e-Taiba had funded the Samjhauta Express blast, with the al-Qaeda providing the staff (men) for (carrying) out the blast. It also brings out that Pakistan’s interior minister Rehman Mallik has said (in January 2010) that Pakistani terrorists were hired for the blast. It also brings out that the confession of Faiza Outalha, the third wife of David Coleman Headley (in 2008, made public in 2010) that Headley was involved in the Samjhauta blast and she was also innocently involved; and also the SIMI leaders’ testimony under narco effect (in 2007 made public in 2008) that they had provided support for the Pakistanis involved in the attack.”
These evidences demolish the entire story framed by National Investigative Agency (NIA) on Samjhauta blast case. Interestingly, all this information is available in public domain, but is being suppressed by the NIA in the investigation. “These facts destroy the case of NIA and confirm the evil intent of the political establishment in the country,” Dr Joshi adds.
Senior columnist S Gurumurthy, in a well-investigated document, has also exposed all lies of the Union Home Minister Shinde in this case. Quoting the resolution of the Committee on Sanctions of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) dated June 29, 2009 he said Arif Qasmani was funded by Dawood Ibrahim and he did the fundraising for LeT and al-Qaida and in exchange for their support, al-Qaida provided support staff for the February 2007 bombing of the Samjhauta Express in Panipat. This resolution is available on the UN website. Two days later, on July 1, 2009, the United States Treasury Department said in its press release: “Arif Qasmani has worked with the LeT to facilitate terrorist attacks, including… Samjota Express bombing.” The US named four Pakistanis, including Arif Qasmani as terrorists, under Executive Order No 13224. This press release is still on the US Treasury site. The United Nations Security Council and the US Treasury Department thus named the LeT, Qasmani and Dawood Ibrahim as accused in Samjhauta terror. This is just the beginning of the torrent of evidence pointing to the LeT and Pakistan.

Six months after the UN and US announced sanctions against LeT and Qasmani, India Today Online (dated January 24, 2010) quoted Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Mallik admitting that Pakistani terrorists were involved in the Samjhauta blast, but with a rider that “some Pakistan-based Islamists had been hired by Lt Col Purohit to carry out the Samjhauta Express attack.”

Not only this, an independent investigation in the US also confirmed Pakistan and LeT’s involvement in this case. Some 10 months later, Sebastian Rotella, a US journalist, wrote in his investigative report titled ‘U.S. agencies were forewarned about suspect in 2008 Mumbai bombings’, that Faiza Outalha, the third wife of David Coleman Headley had confessed (in 2008, which was made public in 2010) that Headley was involved in the Samjhauta blast. Rotella added that Faiza felt that “she had been innocently used” in the Samjhauta terror. In a follow up investigation, Sebastian Rotella disclosed in April 2008 that Faiza returned to the Embassy in Islamabad with the tip about the 2008 Mumbai blast when she again linked him to the Samjhauta blast. Rotella commented that though India and the US blamed the attack on Lashkar, the US authorities had not implicated Headley in that still-unsolved attack, however.
Even in India, the evidence clearly pointed to the role of the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) and the LeT right from the investigation in 2007, In a report, India Today (dated September 19, 2008) said that Nagori gave meticulous account of the involvement of the LeT and Pakistan in the Samjhauta terror. The report was based on narco test testimonies of SIMI leaders. The narcotic tests were carried out on general secretary of SIMI, Safdar Nagori, his brother Kamruddin Nagori and Amil Parvez in Bangalore in April 2007, three months after the Samjhauta blast. The results of these narco tests were available with India Today. It revealed that SIMI activists had executed the Samjhauta blast with the help of the Pakistani nationals from across the border; while Nagori was not directly involved, two members of SIMI, Ehtesham Siddiqui and Nasir, were directly involved. SIMI members, including Nagori’s brother Kamaruddin, were involved in the Samjhauta blast; for executing the Samjhauta blast, the Pakistanis had purchased the suitcase cover from Kataria Market in Indore and one of the members from SIMI had helped the Pakistanis to get the suitcase cover stitched. Investigation had established that in the blast, five bombs packed in suitcases and activated by timer switches were used.

The question is why were these clinching pieces of evidence not pursued? How the blame shifted from the Islamists to the Hindus? Some elements in the Maharashtra Police appear to have colluded in linking the 2008 Malegaon blast to Samjhauta blast. When leads were thus pointing to Pakistan and SIMI as partners in the Samjhauta blast, in November 2008, as an anti-climax, the Maharashtra Anti-Terror Squad (ATS) shockingly told the Special Court on November 14, 2008 through the public prosecutor that Col Purohit, allegedly involved in the Malegaon blast in which RDX was used, had supplied RDX for the Samjhauta blast through one ‘Bhagwan’.

Within the next 48 hours on November 17, 2008, India Today refuted the ATS claim saying that Samjhauta investigators had told it that a study of the blast by the National Security Guard (NSG) said that no RDX, but Potassium Chlorate and Sulphur had been used as explosives. India Today also recalled that immediately after the blasts, then Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil told the media that not RDX, but, a ‘new type of explosive’ had been used to bomb the Samjhauta Express. On that very day (17.11.2008) the ATS counsel retracted the statement he had made earlier involving Col Purohit in the blast. But the damage was done in the 48 hours. Immediately, Pakistan said that it would raise the issue of Purohit’s involvement in Samjhauta at the Secretary-level meeting on November 25, 2008. Finally, on January 20, 2009, Maharashtra ATS officially denied that Col Purohit had supplied RDX for Samjhauta. “This was how the Samjhauta focus—later the blame—shifted from the LeT and the SIMI to Purohit and via Purohit on to saffron. The Maharashtra ATS’s attempt to link Malegaon 2008 to Samjhauta, which shifted the focus away from the LeT on to Purohit, needs to be probed particularly given Dawood Ibrahim’s deep influence on Maharashtra Police,” argues Shri Gurumurthy.

Shri Gurumurthy further argues that if Shinde is telling the truth, then the United Nations Security Council and the US Treasury Department are fabricating charges against Qasmani, Dawood and LeT; Faiza Outallah and The Washington Post are telling lies to fix the LeT and Pakistan; the SIMI officials’ narco evidence is fabricated; and Rehman Mallik’s confession about Pakistani involvement is false. Can it be more ridiculous?

It is clearly the lies of Shinde, the vote bank politician versus all neutral evidence. If this was how the Samjhauta probe was perverted in the Malegaon 2006 blast, the Maharashtra ATS has filed a chargesheet where the SIMI cadre had confessed to their role in the blast. But the CBI is procuring confessions to exonerate them and implicate others, Hindus in the case. So Malegaon 2006 is becoming a case of confession Vs confession! In Malegaon 2008 blasts, Col Purohit and his associates have been charged and the evidence submitted in the Court shows that the accused in the Malegaon 2008 case were planning to assassinate RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and Indresh Kumar for taking money from the ISI! How could the RSS, which is the target of the conspiracy itself, be the conspirator? Does Shinde know what he is talking?