Finding Dawood Ibrahim - What prompted the Home Ministry to feign ignorance?
New Delhi, May 5: The statement in Parliament about the whereabouts of Dawood Ibrahim comes as quite a surprise. The Home Ministry today said that it is unware of the whereabouts of the fugitive don and 1993 Mumbai serial blasts accused.
In addition to this the statement also refers to the fact that Dawood is not on the radar of the intelligence bureau and the extradition process would begin only once his location is known.
This brings us to the pertinent question and that is, " where exactly is Dawood Ibrahim? Is he dead, alive or just in some war torn border area on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border?
Finding Dawood Ibrahim:
Until a few months the Intelligence Bureau was extremely sure about his whereabouts. The Home Ministry too had said that it was in the process of seeking his extradition, but Pakistan was not cooperating.
Pakistan which upgraded Dawood Ibrahim's status from a fugitive criminal to a strategic asset has kept him safe and sound in Karachi. The last known address of Dawood Ibrahim was the Clifton suburb in Karachi. This is where he normally resides and several inputs would go on to suggest that his house resembles a fort which is guarded 24/7.
The other location of Dawood Ibrahim is in Lahore. Former Chief of the Research and Analysis Wing, C D Sahay tells Oneindia that he has a facility in Lahore as well. There is a lot of internal movement of Dawood Ibrahim within Pakistan. This is done strategically to avoid the heat on him.
Will he be sent to the Afghan border?
Last year some media outlets ran a news suggesting that he has been moved to the AF-Pak border.
Several officials in the Intelligence Bureau said it is unlikely he would be moved to an area which is torn by war. These are areas where a war is fought between groups which do not even know their enemy and more importantly are unware of why they are fighting.
Moving Dawood to the border where there is every chance that he may be hit by rocket or killed in a Drone strike is quite unlikely. Even if he is moved there it would be for a very short duration.
Why would the Home Ministry say Dawood's location is unknown?
The statement in the Parliament today is quite surprising especially when India has shared with Pakistan concrete evidence about his whereabouts on more than one ocassion. Every intelligence file on Dawood swears that he is very much in Karachi and is moved to Lahore every now and then.
There are also files which record his conversation and the most recent one suggested that he was trying to strike a property deal in Dubai. The call was however made by Dawood Ibrahim from Karachi to a person in Dubai.
There is a meeting of the Home Ministry officials trying to find out what exactly led to the issuing of such a statement. Was it a blunder or was it intentional is the question that needs to be asked.
If the statement is intentional then one could assume that the government wants to take the heat of the Dawood issue since too much coverage wakes up the Pakistanis who will once again try and move him.
Dawood has been too much in the news since the revelation and the immediate backtracking by former Delhi police Chief Neeraj Kumar. He had said Dawood had offered to surrender and immediately he retracted saying exactly the opposite.
When in the midst of an operation either to nab or extradite a criminal, every Intelligence Agency would prefer some amount of quietus on the issue. Too much bickering the press tips off criminals who are quick to shift base.