New Delhi, Nov 13: The Union Government may have had its own logic in keeping Chhota Rajan in Delhi with the Central Bureau of Investigation.
While the issue is almost settled now, the future of the probe would still depend a lot on the cooperation extended by the Mumbai police which is the custodian of almost all cases against him.
V Balachandran, former Research and Analysis Wing officer who has been part of the Mumbai police force for 17 years feels that the move not to hand over Chhota Rajan to the Mumbai police was a bad one.
Balachandran speaks with OneIndia on this issue and also points out the move not to hand him over to the Mumbai police could create a perception among the public that there are unseen hands trying to protect him.
What changed so suddenly?
Balachandran says that he presumed that Rajan would be handed over to the Mumbai police. It was Mumbai Crime Branch's revised "Red Corner Notice" which had resulted in his arrest as he was wanted in 75 serious crimes in Maharashtra.
Moreover Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had publicly assured that Rajan would be brought to Mumbai.
On November 5 Maharashtra government was forced to hand over all cases against Rajan to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and to announce that he would be kept in Delhi.
I do not buy the argument of the United Nations Transnational Crime Treaty necessitated handing over all such cases to a federal police. I have studied the 2004 UN Convention on Transnational Organized Crime and Protocols. There is no such clause.
Could Mumbai police be blamed if they were on the trail of absconding gangsters? Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh's mollifying remarks on November 10 after the Bihar defeat that there was "no lack of trust" in Mumbai police came too late.
Can CBI do better than Mumbai police?
Can the CBI do better than any state police? Not many people know that in 1992 the CBI was in possession of Pakistan's extensive subversive plans when they were investigating a 1992 terror case. A Supreme Court judgment 2001(1) Crimes 115(SC) gives details.
Yet they did not share details with Bombay Police who would have otherwise prepared themselves at least psychologically when 13 serial bombs hit the city on March 12, 1993.
On 12 December 1991 Lal Singh, a Khalistani terrorist reached Bombay through Colombo under a fictitious passport as Mohammed Iqbal along with an ISI asset Mohammed Shariff who traveled as Manzoor Ahmed.
One Col. Hafiz-ur-Rehman from the ISI was their controlling officer. They then went in different directions all over India for over 6 months, meeting co-conspirators, storing arms and explosives and hiring safe houses.
On 1 July 1992 Lal Singh visited Madras with an Indian accomplice for organizing a "recce" of the Madras Stock Exchange building which they wanted to blow up. Their conspiracy could not succeed as Lal Singh was arrested on July 16, 1992 at Dadar railway station by the Bombay Police on suspicion.
He would have been released had the Gujarat Police not intervened as they suspected his identity. His interrogation revealed 2 safe houses in Ahmedabad where 35 AK-47 rifles, 14 pistols, 4 rocket launchers, remote controlled bombs and huge quantity of explosives were stored.
On 4 August 1992 the Gujarat police handed over the case to the CBI in view of its national importance. Mohammed Sharif was arrested only on 18 June 1993 from Gorakhpur.
However the CBI did not reveal Lal Singh's plans of blowing up the Madras Stock Exchange to Bombay Police, who after Dawood's serial Bombay blasts on March 12, 1993 which included Bombay Stock Exchange also, blamed LTTE even as on March 14, 1993.
Would the Bombay Police have suspected the LTTE in March 1993 had they been privy to Lal Singh's plans of bombing Madras Stock exchange the previous year?