It is becoming increasingly clear that India had several chances to nab Dawood, but someone in the Maharashtra police leaked information or a political boss said a plain No to the operation.
Claims have been made by officials in the past that they came close to nabbing Dawood Ibrahim the fugitive don who is living in Karachi.
The latest to make the claim was Delhi police commissioner, Neeraj Kumar who said at an event that during his stint in the CBI, an attempt was made to nab a certain gentleman in Pakistan before a political boss said no.
The Dawood Ibrahim cat and mouse game
There is no doubting the capability of the Indian police force in executing an operation to nab Dawood dead or alive. India has the resources to do so, but the problem is the lack of political will.
Dawood Ibrahim for several is safer dead than alive. As one senior official with the Research and Analysis Wing states, "He is bound to sing once he is brought back to India and this will embarrass a good number of leaders."
The officer also goes on to add that there was a time when the entire central Intelligence Agency had stopped sharing Dawood related alerts with the Maharashtra Police.
There was a time almost ten years back when a senior official had come extremely close to nabbing the don. However the information regarding the operation was leaked by a police official from Mumbai as a result of which all the time and efforts put into this operation went down the drain.
What Dawood can expose?
If at all Dawood Ibrahim is brought back to India alive, then there is a good chance that he will expose 20 per cent of the politicians in Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh.
Dawood had to pay a certain amount of money to some politicians from Maharashtra each time a consignment of his landed in one of the Mumbai docks. These consignments which initially had gold later went on to bring in both arms and cocaine.
While the consignments kept coming in unabated, the protection money to the politicians that he paid only increased with the kind of material he brought in.
It is also a well known fact that post the 1993 Mumbai serial blasts, Dawood had to pay two politicians a sum of Rs 14 crore each to ensure that he got a safe passage for his close aids and also the members of the Tiger Memon family.
In Uttar Pradesh he runs a major arms racket which has the blessings of several top leaders. Top leaders often take money from him to run the racket and there are times he has supplied arms for their political battles as well.
The complete lack of political will
General V K Singh, union minister and former Army Chief said recently at a function that India is capable of carrying out an operation like the US did when it killed Osama Bin Laden.
These are not brazen statements at all by General Singh and looking at the brains that operate in the Intelligence Bureau and the Resarch and Analysis Wing an operation of the Osama kind is very much possible.
India had in its last two attempts spent a considerable amount of money to nab Dawood and had even appointed non state actors to execute the job.
However the problem continues to be political will. General Singh says that India would have gone to war with Paksitan after the Parliament attack, but there were delays in the political leadership.
The problem for the officers in such operations is that they will have to wait for a political leader to sanction the project. While operating on international land, it is important that the political leadership is kept in the loop as they will have to lead a bail out programme in case something does go wrong.
However in the Dawood operations more often than not it has turned out to be the political leadership which has been the problem. There have been three occassions when the political leadership has said no to a Dawood operation despite all the plan being laid to perfection.