Mumbai, Nov.29 : The lone terrorist nabbed alive by National Security Guard (NSG) commandos has reportedly told his Mumbai Police interrogators that he and his 39 colleagues were given the impression that they would come back alive after carrying out their mission of mayhem in India's commercial capital.
Ajmal Amir Kasab revealed that the terrorists were scheduled to sail out of Mumbai on Thursday, adding that their recruiters had even charted out the course to be taken with the help of a global positioning system device. Kasab also told police they had done a reccee of Mumbai few months ago. He said he had come along with eight operatives, posing as students and lived in a rented room at Colaba market.
Sources told a newspaper that this safe return bait was enough to convince the terrorists to undertake the audacious mission that has so far left over 120 dead, including several foreigners and over 300 injured.
According to Ajmal, the Lashkar-e-Taiba had trained all terrorists in marine warfare. According to one report, they received training in a special course called Daura-e-Shifa which converts a routine terror strike and into a specialized commando raid.
According to a Times of India report, Ajmal has revealed the name of his fellow jihadis, all Pakistani citizens, as Abu Ali, Fahad, Omar, Shoaib, Umer, Abu Akasha, Ismail, Abdul Rahman (Bara) and Abdul Rahman (Chhota).
The terror group is said to have set off for Mumbai on November 21 from an isolated creek near Karachi without the deadly cargo of arms and ammunition they were to use against the innocents in Mumbai. The group received arms and ammunition on board a large Pakistani vessel which picked them up the following day. The vessel, whose ownership is now the subject of an international probe, had four Pakistanis apart from crew members.
A day later, they captured an Indian-owned trawler Kuber and killed all four fishermen on board. The skipper, Amarjit Narayan, was forced to take them to India and was killed immediately thereafter. Ismail, one of the terrorists and a trained sailor, is said to have then guided the trawler towards Mumbai and reached its shoreline on November 26. The group slowed down its advance and planned for a landing after dusk. They shifted to inflatable boats and disembarked at Badhwar Park in Cuffe Parade and began their killing spree, distributing themselves in batches of five.
Kasab, who sustained minor injuries in the police firing in Girgaum, was produced before the Esplanade Metropolitan Magistrate on Friday and a magistrate has remanded him to police custody till December 8.
Kasab and Ismail are said to be terrorists who gunned down Mumbai anti-terror squad Chief Hemant Karkare, Additional Commissioner of Police Ashok Kamthe and encounter specialist Vijay Salaskar.
Sources say that the satellite phone and global positioning system (GPS) map recovered from the trawler Kuber is now among the most crucial pieces of evidence.
The trawler was owned by Vinod Masani and had a five-member crew. Sources said that it is likely that the trawler was hijacked near the maritime boundary, where incursions by vessels on both sides are frequent.
Vinod Masani and his brother Hiralal have been detained for questioning by the Gujarat police.
The four fishermen on the boat, Balwant Prabhu, 45, Mukesh Rathod, 20, and Natu Nanu, 20 and Ramesh Nagji, 37 are still missing.