Pakistani-American terrorist David Coleman Headley on Friday said LeT leader Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi emphasised that surveillance for 26/11 attacks should be done properly as this was a chance "to take revenge for all bomb blasts" done in the past in Pakistan. He said this during day 5 of the deposition before the special TADA court in Mumbai.
Headley said that Chabad House was selected by LeT as a target as it was an international location where Jewish and Israeli people were staying. He added that he had purchased red and yellow sacred threads from Siddhivinayak temple as a cover for the 10 attackers so that people would think they were Hindus. He went on to say that he discouraged LeT from selecting Siddhivinayak temple and Naval air station for the strike as then the 10 attackers would have to concentrate on those targets only.
Ilyas Kashmiri asked me to recce National Defence College in Delhi as it was a primary target for Al-Qaeda, Headley has told court.
He stated he was interested in developing close relations with a Shiv Sena member as he thought that LeT would be interested in future to either attack Sena Bhawan or assassinate its head.
He said that he visited and videographed Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) in July 2008 while adding that LeT's Major Iqbal had asked him to recruit some employees of BARC in future who would work for ISI.
On Thursday, Headley had said that Ishraat Jahan was a Lashkar operative and a member of the terror organization's women's wing.
According to media reports, Headley was asked if there was a botched-up operation in India, and he responded saying that an LeT mastermind Muzammil told him that there was one in which a female LeT member was killed. Of the three options given to him on who that female member was, Headley picked Ishrat Jehan's name.
Headley had reportedly said this earlier in an NIA interrogation in 2010.
On Wednesday, due to a technical snag on the US side, Headley’s statements could not be recorded.
Headley added that Tahawur Rana was aware of his connection with LeT and that he was going to India for intelligence work on the instructions of the terror outfit.
Monday was the first time that a foreign terrorist deposed before an Indian court via video conferencing. "It is for the first time in the Indian legal history, one foreign terrorist would give his evidence through video link and his evidence will be recorded. And I feel his evidence is most useful because that may unfold many things behind the terror attack of 26 November," senior Public Prosecutor Ujjwal Nikam told ANI. These are the some of the revelations made by Headley:
1. Ishraat Jahan was a Lashkar member.
2. Opened an account in a bank at Indusland Bank vranch in Tardeo AC market area in Mumbai on September 14 2006. On October 11 2006, I received an amount of Rs 66,505 from Tawahhur Rana. On November 7th 2006, Rana gave me $500. On 4th Decmeber Rana gave me 1,000 dollars and on November 30 I was given Rs 17,636. Major Iqbal of the ISI paid me $ 25,000 US before I visited Mumbai. This was the money meant to be used to carry out the reconnaissance.
3. The agreement for my office was signed with one Bora on November 1 2006. On July 16th 2008 (four months prior to the attack), I sought extension of the licence for my office in Tardeo Mumbai. The same was granted.
4. Rana was opposed to the idea of shutting down the Tardeo office. Major Iqbal and I felt we should shut it down. This was discussed on January 2009 two months after the attack. The office in Tardeo was an immigration office for public consumption. It was just a cover.
5. It was Rana who set up the cover for me in Mumbai. I was in touch with him all the time. Rana was a doctor in the Pakistan army but later moved out. I tried opening a business in Mumbai. An application for the same was given with a signature of Raymond Sanders. However the RBI refused permission to open a business account
6. You can find my signatures at the entry book of Reliance Webworld in Mumbai. I had visited this place on September 12 and 18 and also on October 30th 2007 to access the internet. You can find my signatures at the entry book of Reliance Webworld in Mumbai. I had visited this place on September 12 and 18 and also on October 30th 2007 to access the internet.
7. My passport was the document that I used to activate the mobile numbers. I had three mobile numbers.
8. Lashkar also planned an attack on Akshardham and Gandhinagar.
Correction: The headline earlier said that Headley referred to Ishrat as a "Lashkar suicide bomber", this has been corrected.