New Delhi : The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday said that David Coleman Headley’s statement on Ishrat Jahan, the 19-year-old girl who was killed in an alleged ‘fake encounter’ in 2004, was affiliated to the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) as a testimony that raises important questions and that the truth has to be seen as it is.
“It is an important conformation of a fact that has been in public circulation for long time. In fact Headley pointed towards Ishrat in 2013 but at that time there was attempt to not accept truth as it was. The attempt seems to be more than finding the truth.So, the idea was clearly to clog a terrorist with other issues and I think this testimony raises an important questions that the truth has to been seen as it is,” BJP leader Nalin Kohli told ANI here.
“Even Arun Jaitley ji had written a letter to the then Prime Minister pointing out about the Ishrat Jahan case. There was fact that she was shown on the LeT website as a martyr. All of these are a matter of concern but then at that time it was fund that agencies of the government were put to war to each other,” he added.
“To what extent are we serving national interest by trying to portrait terrorist and those who are inimical to the interest of India,” he said
Meanwhile, Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju echoed similar sentiments and said that the revelations are extremely good for the security agencies and prosecuting agencies as everything is getting clear in the public domain.
While deposing before the court via video link from an undisclosed spot in the United States, Headley said that there was a women’s wing in the LeT.
Deposing before the court, Headley claimed that the mastermind of the 2008 Mumbai attack, Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi told him about a botched up operation of Muzammil in India.
“The operation was about shooting the police at some naka. One woman LeT named Ishrat Jahan was involved. Muzammil Bhatt was the head of our group before Sajid Mir,” he told the court.
He, however, denied the involvement of any woman suicide bomber in the LeT but later named Ishrat Jahan as an LeT operative.
Early on the morning of 15 June 2004, Ishrat Jahan, Javed Sheikh, Zeeshan Johar and Amjad Ali Rana were shot dead on the road leading to the Kotarpur waterworks on the outskirts of Ahmedabad. The encounter was carried out allegedly by a team led by DIG D.G. Vanjara, who was later jailed for his alleged involvement in the Sohrabuddin Sheikh fake encounter.
The police alleged that Ishrat and her associates were Lashkar-e-Taiba ( LeT) operatives involved in a plot to assassinate the Chief Minister of Gujarat, Narendra Modi. Later, an investigation was launched into the allegations that Ishrat was killed in a fake encounter. After a long investigation, in 2009, an Ahmedabad Metropolitan court ruled that the encounter was staged.
The decision was challenged by the Gujarat State government, and taken to the High Court. On 3 July 2013, the CBI has filed its first chargesheet in an Ahmedabad court saying that the shooting was a staged encounter carried out in cold blood. (ANI)