Posted by : Shoumik Das Sunday, December 28, 2014

NEW DELHI: Former IPS official M L Kumawat, who was special secretary (internal security) in the Union home ministry during the 26/11 attacks, has contested claims made in the foreign media that Indian intelligence agencies were tracking Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) communications head and 26/11 accused Zarar Shah, before the Mumbai attacks. 
“The point made in the investigative report by New York Times, ProPublica and the PBS series ‘Frontline’ that Zarar Shah’s computer activity was under the surveillance of an Indian intelligence agency prior to 26/11 attacks, is not correct,” Kumawat told TOI on Tuesday. According to him, the only prior intelligence India had about the LeT’s plans to attack iconic buildings in Mumbai, including Taj hotel and Jewish facilities, was a US alert dated September 24. “It was forwarded to the Maharashtra government, which stepped up security at the identified targets but somehow failed to maintain the same until November,” said the official.
Local and foreign tourists flock to the terror attack sites in the city of Mumbai
days ahead of the anniversary of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks.
A top IB official told TOI that the intelligence establishment started piecing together prior information, including that compiled by US and British intelligence, only after the terrorists struck at Mumbai. That is how the commanders in the LeT control room in Karachi, who gave blow-by-blow instructions to the attackers holed up in Taj and Nariman House, were tracked. “Even the sea route taken by the terrorists was retraced during this post-attack surveillance,” the IB officer said while conceding the lapse on part of the agencies to “connect the dots”.
David Coleman Headley, a Pakistani-American who scouted targets in Mumbai, exchanged incriminating emails with plotters that went unnoticed until shortly before his arrest in Chicago in late 2009.
The NYT report had claimed that the British had access to data from Shah’s communications, as did an Indian agency, but the information was not specific enough to detect the threat. It added that Indian agencies did not home in on the plot even with alerts from the US. Clues slipped past the Americans as well. David Coleman Headley, a Pakistani-American who scouted targets in Mumbai, exchanged incriminating emails with plotters that went unnoticed until shortly before his arrest in Chicago in late 2009. 
Source : Times of India

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