Pakistan’s demand for evidence a delaying tactic, says India

December 12th, 2008 - 8:11 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Dec 12 (IANS) India has “enough evidence” to link elements in its territory to the Mumbai terror outrage and sees Pakistan’s demand for evidence as “nothing but a delaying tactic” to avoid dismantling “terrorist infrastructure” in that country, government sources said here Friday. “It’s absolutely redundant and nothing but a delaying tactic,” high-level sources told IANS in response to Pakistan’s demand for “credible information and evidence” about the Mumbai terror attacks, that killed 179 people, including 26 foreigners.

There is a variety of evidence that establishes the complicity of elements of the ISI (Pakistan’s spy service Inter Services Intelligence) and elements of the army acting in collusion with jihadi groups, the sources said.

“India can provide this evidence in a court of law as is the procedure with criminal and terrorist cases,” the sources, who only spoke on condition they were not named, maintained.

If India has enough evidence, what is preventing it from sharing it with Pakistan?

“You share information with somebody who does not know. Pakistan has the knowledge of what happened,” the sources said.

“Our own investigations cannot proceed beyond a certain point without provision of credible information and evidence pertaining to Mumbai attacks,” Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said in a televised statement Friday.

Pakistan’s insistence on evidence comes on a day when the Dawn, a respected Pakistani daily, published a report that quotes the father of Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, the lone terrorist captured by Indian authorities after the Mumbai attacks, saying he could recognize the photograph of his son which was repeatedly flashed on TV screens and in newspaper reports.

“I was in denial for the first couple of days, saying to myself it could not have been my son,” the newspaper quoted Amir Kasab as saying in his village in Faridkot. “Now I have accepted it.”

Part of India’s reluctance to share evidence is the past experience of dealing with Pakistani authorities in terror-related cases.

In 2002, India shared evidence of the complicity of Jaish-e-Mohammad (JuM) and Laskhar-e-Taiba (LeT) in the Dec 13, 2001 attack on Indian parliament. “Information was shared. But nothing happened,” the sources pointed out.

The sources pointed out that India has shared some information and evidence on the Mumbai attacks with “the US and other friendly countries.”

Friendly countries have come to the same conclusion independently and jointly with Indian authorities about the complicity of Pakistan-based elements in the Mumbai attacks, sources said.

Sources pointed out that it was clear evidence that explains the swiftness with which the UN Security Council banned Jamaat-ud-Dawa, a public front for the outlawed LeT suspected of masterminding the Mumbai carnage, and put four top LET leaders on the consolidated list that subject them to assets freeze and travel ban. There was complete unanimity in the Security Council on banning JuD and terrorism originating from the Pakistani authority.

“There is no doubt what needs to be done. It is for the elected government of Pakistan to act now and dismantle infrastructure of terrorism in that country,” the sources stressed.

Speaking in parliament, External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee Thursday asked Pakistan to dismantle the terrorist infrastructure that ensures no terror attacks are carried out against India from the Pakistani territory. Mukherjee also told parliament that he has given a list of 40 fugitives to Pakistan who are wanted in different terrorist and criminal activities in India, but Islamabad had done nothing about it.

Under intense pressure from the US, Pakistan Thursday clamped down on JuD which has been branded as a terrorist organization by the UN.

Indian authorities have released what they said were the names and Pakistani hometowns of the 10 terrorists who subjected India’s business capital to a terror spree for over three days.

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