Karzai Calls for Disbanding of Security Firms

Karzai Calls for Disbanding of Security Firms

VOA News16 August 2010

A U.S. contractor looks away from a dust cloud whipped up by a helicopter departing over the gatepost at Combat Outpost Terra Nova in Kandahar, Afghanistan, 19 July 2010

Photo: AP

A U.S. contractor looks away from a dust cloud whipped up by a helicopter departing over the gatepost at Combat Outpost Terra Nova in Kandahar, Afghanistan, 19 July 2010


A spokesman for Afghan President Hamid Karzai says the Afghan leader is giving private security firms four months to cease operations in the country.

Waheed Omar told reporters that Mr. Karzai plans to issue the deadline later on Monday.

More than 50 international and Afghan security firms operate in Afghanistan, employing at least 30,000 people. President Karzai has said the companies undermine the work of Afghan security forces by creating a parallel security structure.

NATO officials said Monday that dissolving the firms would be possible once the Afghan army and police are capable of providing the security that private companies currently offer, including protecting officials and supply convoys. The officials would not comment on whether or not the four-month deadline could be met.

The Pentagon said last week it was working to address the concerns of the Afghan president.

On Monday, NATO said an al-Qaida operative was among two insurgents killed in a NATO air strike in the northern province of Kunduz.

The alliance says Abu Baqir, a Taliban sub-commander and al-Qaida group leader, was killed Sunday while carrying out an attack on a police post in Aliabad.

Elsewhere in Kunduz, NATO says a roadside bomb killed an Afghan child and wounded three others Monday in the Qal’ah-ye Zal district.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.

American Team Prepares Strong-Arming Tour of Middle East,

[The sanctions sheriff is coming to town.]

US Team For Middle-East To Discuss Security Council Sanctions Against Iran

AHN News Staff

Washington, United States (AHN) – The United States is trying to build a consensus on the latest UN Security Council-imposed sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program.

A team of officials from Washington is set to tour the Middle-east later this week to hold talks with the UAE, Bahrain and Lebanese officials to discuss the Security Council resolution in June imposing a fourth round of sanctions against Tehran.

Speaking to the UAE’s official news agency, WAM, Sunday, US Treasury Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, Stuart Levey, said, he and his team would visit the Middle-east “to discuss the new Security Council resolution last June imposing a fourth round of sanctions on Tehran and also make sure the new resolution is well understood by US’s partners in the region”.

The European Union, Canada and Australia have given their nod to the latest Security Council sanctions and the US is sending teams to Brazil, Ecuador, Japan, South Korea and Turkey to persuade them to also implement the sanctions in letter and spirit.

“We will be going everywhere as soon as we can because the important thing is to have a global implementation of these sanctions,” Levey was quoted as telling the UAE news agency.

Levey will also seek to plug alternative routes Iran might take to get around the sanctions by opening front companies, doctoring with money transfers and preparing fake shipping documents. Calling the UAE a responsible partner of the US, the Treasury official said the Middle-east country had seen the risks posed by Iranian activities to its reputation and it would go all out to diligently protect itself from all kinds of illicit activities.

“We need to keep identifying (Iran’s activities) and taking the action to prevent their operation,” the US official told the news agency.


Pakistani forces crackdown in Baluchistan

Pakistani forces crackdown in Baluchistan, dozens arrested including a leader of BNM

ccupied Baluchistan: Pakistani security forces have started a massive crackdown against Baluch people after the killing of 16 security officials and settlers in district Bolan and Quetta. Over 35 people have reportedly been rounded up from different areas in Baluchistan so far, they have been shifted to undisclosed locations for interrogations.

Meanwhile three leaders of BNM namely Agha Abid Shah, Safeer Ahmad and Abdul Sattar Baluch, who is also the chairman of Government Teachers Association have been arrested from Panjgur town. According to eye-witnesses four vehicle of Pakistan FC has surrounded a local hospital in Punjur and arrested Agha Abid Shah and Safeer Ahmad Baluch when they were sitting in a medical store. Moments later they raided another Medical Store and arrested Abdul Sattar Baluch as well. According to the witness’s account the security forces have tied the hands of the victims and blinded folded them by putting a piece of black cloth on their faces.

After hearing news of BNM leaders’ arrested several people including a large number of women and children took to streets to protest against the arrested and disappearing of the Baluch activist. They surrounded a local police station and demanded that a case should be registered against the personnel of Pakistan Para-military for abducting the Baluch leaders. The protesters have also chanted slogans against Pakistani FC, Police and Levies Forces. The families of the three Baluch leaders while expressing their fear said that their loved one might face the same fate as Shaheed GM Baluch, Lala Munir Baluch and Sher Mohammad Baluch. It is worth noting that Saheed GM Baluch and his companions were arrested in a similar broad-daylight raid by Pakistani Para-military forces from their lawyers’ office. They were killed in cold-blood a week after their arrest.

Separately, a tractor drive namely Mobarak Marri has been arrested from New Kahan Quetta while he was taking water for the residents of New Kahan. Family and friends of Marri has reported that he was filling the water tanker at a water supply station when four vehicles of FC surrounded his tractor and arrested him. Marri is a resident of New Kahan and has been supplying water to the area from past many years.

The relatives of Mobarak Marri said that he has no political affiliation with any parties; his only crime is that he is a Marri and a resident of New Kahan, which is also known as the Gaza Strip of Baluchistan. New Kahan has been under the radar of Pakistani security forces since the Marri people have settled their after their return from Afghanistan 1990s.

Disinformation On Pak Dawood/Chota Crime War, ISI Counterfeiting Claims

[Pure B.S.  Who thinks up this crap, anyway?  Who, in their wildest imagination, would ever dream that Pakistan’s ISI would hand over their India-undermining counterfeit Indian currency operation (if they really had one) to India?]

Pak hands over charge of fake currency to Tiger Memon

By Baljeet Parmar | Place: Mumbai | Agency: DNA

In a serious blow to fugitive don Dawood Ibrahim, Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) has relieved him of the lucrative fake Indian currency ‘business’ and handed it over to 1993 Mumbai blasts mastermind Tiger Memon.

According to Indian intelligence sources, the move, which was initiated by the ISI two months ago, was finally put into operation early this month. The Pakistani government had been under tremendous international pressure to rein in the activities of Dawood, who has been declared a global terrorist by the United States.

For the past five years, Dawood’s close aide Aftab Batki had been overseeing the fake Indian currency racket through a wide network of couriers and smugglers based in Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh. Intelligence sources said such currency was being printed in ISI-protected printing presses in Pakistan. It reached India through Batki’s network.

The latest ISI move may be aimed at showing that it no longer patronises the Dawood gang. “It seems Dawood has lost his clout with the ISI top brass while Tiger Memon has strengthened his relations with it,” said a senior official.

According to sources, over the years, serious differences have cropped up between Dawood and Memon.

Multiple Incidents of Mumbai Police Staging Fake Encounters

Sharma behind slain man’s kidnap

Vijay V Singh | TNN

Mumbai: Dismissed cop and encounter specialist Pradeep Sharma played a key role in the kidnapping of Ramnarayan Gupta, a criminal from Vashi, who was later shot by the police in a fake encounter. That was what deputy police commissioner K M M Prasanna, who heads the special investigating team probing the encounter, told the Andheri metropolitan court on Friday. Sharma, police constables Tanaji Desai and Ratnakar Kamble and police informers Akhil Khan, Hitesh Solanki and Shailendra were remanded in police custody till January 14 by magistrate R K Shaikh.

Gupta was picked up on November 11, 2006, from Vashi and brought near the Nana Nani Park in Versova where he was shot by the D N Nagar police. The police stand was that inspector Pradeep Suryavanshi went to the park and asked Gupta to surrender. The police claimed that Gupta fired, and Suryavanshi and his team retaliated, resulting in his death.

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‘My husband’s soul can rest in peace’

Family Of Ramnarayan Gupta Who Was Killed In A Fake Encounter Says They Are Relieved That Justice Is Being Served

S Ahmed Ali | TNN

Mumbai: For advocate Ramprasad Gupta, who is the brother of the deceased Ramnarayan aka Lakhann Bhaiyya, the Special Investigation Team’s (SIT) conclusion that his brother was killed by the police in an alleged fake encounter, is a vindication of his long-fought battle for justice.

“The last three years have been very difficult for my family as we were fighting the system for justice. It was an extremely tough phase of our lives.” said a relieved Gupta.

On November 11, 2006, around 7.30 pm, the team of D N Nagar police led by inspector Pradeep Suryavanshi, inspector Dilip Palande and assistant inspector Arvind Sarvankar, claims to have gunned down Ramnarayan Gupta, an alleged Chhota Rajan aide in Andheri. But Ram Prasad insisted that his brother had been kidnapped by plainclothes policemen that evening, and moved the Bombay High Court for justice.

“All my opponents were police officers who were highly connected. We had to move my brother’s wife Subhalaxmi out of the city for security reasons. We were concerned about her safety. She has a son and schoolgoing daughter,” said Gupta, who makes no bones about the fact that his brother did indeed have a criminal past.

“Yes, my brother was a criminal. But that was in the past. He had been rehabilitated successfully, and was living a normal life when he was murdered,” Gupta added.

Within a week of the encounter, Gupta filed a complaint in the High Court seeking a judicial probe. The day his brother had been gunned down, Gupta said he sent a telegram to the Mumbai police commissioner’s office alleging that a couple of plainclothes policemen had kidnapped Gupta.

“Even when Magistrate R A Shaikh was conducting judicial inquiry, she had been threatened by Suryavanshi. Initially, I was afraid. I couldn’t help but think what they would do to me if they had no qualms about threatening a magistrate,” said Gupta.

Support from friends who stood by the family through these trying times, he added, gave them the strength to keep fighting. Ramnarayan’s wife Subhalaxmi is happy that the wheels of justice are moving in the right direction. “Now, my husband’s soul can rest in peace,” she reportedly told Gupta over phone when she heard the news of the arrests that were made.

Advocate Shyam Marwari, who represented Gupta in court, said: “The investigation was handled by the SIT head by DCP Prasanna who is reporting to the high court.”

‘He has had a chequered career spanning more than 2 decades’
Mumbai:
Controversy has dogged the footsteps of inspector Pradeep Rameshwar Sharma whose meteoric rise from a sub inspector to an encounter specialist in a little over 23 years is well known. He hails from a village in Dhulia, Maharashtra, where his father Rameshwar Sharma worked as a school principal. It is believed that Sharma got his first “taste’’ of the underworld and the Chhota Rajan gang when he was assigned to the anti-narcotic cell in Bandra. There was a time when he was on good terms with former top cop Vijay Salaskar, who was gunned down during the 26/11 attack. But the two later parted ways, the reasons for which are not known.

Sharma shot to fame during his tenure as a senior inspector in the Crime Intelligence Unit, Andheri. Besides killing gangster Vinod Matkar, he eliminated several underworld kingpins including Parvez Siddiqui, Rafiq Dabbawala, Sadik Kalia and three LeT suspects. But his star began to fade when his name cropped up in some of the more high-profile cases including his alleged involvement in the custodial death of bomb blast accused Khwaja Yunus, his nexus with underworld and Dawood Ibrahim, a land-grabbing case in Malad and the alleged kidnapping and murder of Ramnarayan Gupta alias Lakhann bhaiya in a fake encounter. Source allege that he later shifted his loyalties to Chhota Shakeel. “He has had a chequered career spanning more than 2 decades,” said an official. —S Ahmed Ali | TNN

The Rise & Fall Of An Inspector
Inspector Pradeep Rameshwar Sharma, (47) joined the force in 1984 as a sub inspector at Mahim police station
Over the last 20-odd years, Sharma is believed to have killed 105 criminals After two years at the Mahim police station, he was transferred to the crime branch. In 1991, he was assigned to Juhu police station

In 1995 | Sharma was promoted to the post of assistant inspector and was assigned to the Anti Narcotic Cell of the crime branch unit in Bandra. In 1997, with Daya Nayak, he was accused of allegedly kidnapping and extorting scrap dealer Mohammed Nabi

Between 1998 and 2003 |
Sharma who was heading the Crime Intelligence Unit at the crime branch made headlines after killing several gangsters including Rafik Dabbawala and Vinod Matkar

In 2004 |
He took the charge of the Kandivli crime branch unit. He was also allegedly involved in settling land and property disputes with the help of underworld don Chhota Shakeel. His name cropped up in the custodial death of bomb blast accused Khawja Yunus

In 2006 |
He came under the scanner for his alleged role in a land-grabbing case in Malad. It was in November 2006 that he allegedly orchestrated the killing of alleged chhota Rajan aide Ramnarayan Gupta in a fake encounter

In mid 2006
Sharma was transferred to Amravati. He returned to Mumbai in 2008 and was posted at Dharavi police station. Within three months then police commissioner Hasan Gafoor dismissed him

In September 2009 |
Sharma went appealed to the Maharashtra Administrative Tribunal against the dismissal order and shot back. The MAT passed an order to reinstate him with full wages. The Mumbai police’s appeal against the order is still pending in the HC

A LONG BATTLE: Ram Prasad Gupta, the victim’s brother

Huge support for Sharma in court

TIMES NEWS NETWORK

Mumbai: Suryavanshi, currently senior inspector at MIDC police station, was not present at the court, being on sick leave. The SIT said that the vehicle used for bringing Gupta to Versova was yet to be recovered. Prasanna, who argued the case himself and said that Sharma’s associates had kidnapped Gupta, declared, “As of now we are concentrating on the kidnapping aspect of the case. Later we will focus on Sharma’s role in the murder.’’ All the arrested accused have been booked for kidnapping and murder. Magistrate Shaikh had conducted a probe and concluded that Gupta was in police custody when he was shot. The probe was carried out on the directions of the Bombay high court after Gupta’s brother, Ramprasad, filed a writ stating that his brother had been killed in a fake encounter.

On Friday, a huge crowd, including businessmen and serving and former police personnel like Sachin Vaze and Aslam Momin gathered in the court to extend moral support to Sharma. The defence counsel’s argument to transfer the remand hearing to another court as magistrate Shaikh had earlier conducted a probe was turned down. Senior advocate Shrikant Shivade who represented Sharma, argued that politicians and senior officers had conspired to “eliminate a courageous officer’’ by booking him in false cases.

Suryavanshi, the inspector who shot Gupta, had earlier deposed before Shaikh and claimed that he had only fired in retaliation when Gupta shot at him. However, the court found evidence to suggest that he was at the police station when the alleged incident took place. The magistrate also said that there was no examination of the weapons used by the police officers to verify these claims. Prasanna refused to comment on the action to be taken against Suryavanshi. “We are not in a hurry,’’ he said.

Ramprasad and Aruna Bheda, wife of Anil Bheda who was present with Gupta at Vashi, had sent telegrams and faxes to police commissioners of Navi Mumbai and Mumbai soon after the kidnapping occurred.

Anil Bheda was also picked up by the police and reportedly let off. His version of the story before Shaikh—that he proceeded to Thane from Vashi and went off to Shirdi—was not accepted. The husband-wife duo and a witnesses subsequently gave a statement before the magistrate revealing the true facts.

Damning Report
Ajudicial probe conducted by the magistrate R A Shaikh a year ago had already concluded that the encounter was a fake. “There is strong circumstantial evidence that suggests that Ramnarayan was abducted by the police and killed in custody,’’ said Shaikh in her report. The deceased’s brother Ram Prasad claimed that he had sent three telegrams to then police commissioner A N Roy’s office that his brother had been kidnapped by cops. Though Roy, in an affidavit, said the telegrams could not be traced, the telephone company BSNL confirmed their delivery.

“From the injuries Ramnarayan sustained, it can be made out that the police team’s intention was not to arrest, but was to kill him,” read the report.
—S Ahmed Ali | TNN

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Three-year wait for JUSTICE

Nov 11, 2006 | Around 7.30 pm, the team of D N Nagar policemen led by inspector Pradeep Suryavanshi, inspector Dilip Palande and assistant inspector Arvind Sarvankar, claims to have gunned down alleged Chhota Rajan aide Ramnarayan Gupta alias Lakhann bhaiyya at Versova, Andheri The same day, around 3 pm, Gupta’s wife Subhalaxmi and his brother Ramprasad Gupta, who is an advocate, send a telegram to the police commissioner’s office alleging that some plainclothes policemen had kidnapped Gupta as well as his friend Arun Bheda.
Dec 2006 | Ramprasad moves the HC claiming that his brother was killed in a fake encounter Mar 2007 | The court directs a judicial probe
July 2007 | The Andheri metropolitan magistrate R A Shaikh starts the probe
Aug 2008 | Shaikh submits a confidential report in which she observes that there appears to be some substance in Ramprasad’s allegations that the encounter was nothing but a cold-blooded murder. She suggests that a murder case be registered against the police team. During this period, Suryavanshi threatens Shaikh and her family through some advocates. She files a complaint with the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate and the HC alleging that Suryavanshi threatened her. HC directs the crime branch to conduct an inquiry
Nov 2008 | The crime branch submits a confidential report stating that a case should be registered against Suryavanshi
Aug 2009 | Court directs police to treat Ram Prasad’s complaint as an FIR and register a case
Oct 2009 | The HC appoints DCP K N Prasanna as the head of the Special Investigating Team. He is asked to conduct an investigation and file a report by January 11, 2010
Jan 7, 2010 | DCP Prasanna summons inspector Pradeep Sharma and his constable under the pretext of questioning them and arrests them. Arrest warrants have also been issued for other officers including Suryavanshi

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An ENCOUNTER Too Many

Pradeep Sharma is not the only police officer who is infamous for gunning down criminals in encounters. With the exception of Daya Nayak who is currently under suspension, all belonged to the elite batch of 1983

Daya Nayak | The sub inspector, under suspension after coming under the scanner of the ACB, joined the force in 1996 where he worked with Sharma. During his stint with the Crime Intelligence Unit, he became known for high-profile encounters. Over the years, Nayak has allegedly logged 86 encounters
Sachin Vaze | The assistant inspector is believed to be one of Sharma’s most trusted lieutenants. In 2004, he was arrested by the state
CID in connection with the custodial death of bomb blast accused Khwaja Yunus. He was arrested on charges of murder and fabrication of evidence. He is out on an interim bail. Vaze’s resignation has not been accepted
Praful Bhosale | An intelligence officer, he was involved in several encounters but escaped major controversies till he was suspended from
service in the Khwaja Yunus case. He was in charge of the Ghatkopar crime branch unit in whose custody Yunus died. Though Bhosale is under suspension, he’s likely to be reinstated due to lack of evidence
Aslam Momin | He worked with Pradeep Sharma at the Andheri CIU and was one of the low-profile officers in the unit. He was
dismissed from service in 2005 for having underworld links. Momin has been accused of allegedly having links with the D Gang. In his appeal, pending in the high court, he has denied having links with the underworld
Ravindra Angre | He became a recognised face in 2003 after the gunning down of Thane’s notorious gangster, Suresh Manchekar.
Angre found himself embroiled in a controversy after builder Ganesh Wagh filed a complaint of extortion, kidnapping and robbery against him. After 13 months in jail, he was released, but is under suspension
Vijay Salaskar | The top cop was gunned down in the 26/11 attack. He was the unofficial ‘head of the death squad’. Salaskar rose to fame
after encounters with hardened criminals like Amar Naik, and two of Arun Gawli’s senior lieutenants including Sada Pawle. He was shunted out of the crime branch after he opened the underworld-gutka-baron nexus in 2005

The Times of India, January 9, 2010

The War of Underworld Dons Sucks in Indian, Pakistani Agencies

Chota Rajan (L) and Dawood Ibrahim (R): When they were friends

The War of Underworld Dons Sucks in Indian, Pakistani Agencies

By Arun Rajnath

NEW DELHI, September 22: The split between the mythical and mystical underworld dons of India – Dawood Ibrahim and Chota Rajan – has turned into a war between the super intelligence agencies of India and Pakistan.

The Indian sensitive agencies and military intelligence have failed so far to achieve their goal of eliminating Dawood Ibrahim, despite their successful penetration into the D-Company. Likewise Chota Rajan, once the second in command of Dawood, is being protected by the Indian agencies.

But observers watching the underworld scene say Chota Rajan is fast losing ground as it has become difficult for him to lie low in Muslim countries. One highly placed source told the South Asia Tribune Rajan is in constant touch with the underworld of Japan.

Recently, he said, a meeting of the underworld dons was held in Tokyo directly under the nose of the Japanese police. The dons elected their new chief who allegedly has links with Rajan. Therefore, intelligence experts say Rajan could shift base from Malaysia to Japan for a safe hideout. Had he not been under protection of the Indian sensitive agencies, the Dawood hounds would have eliminated him by now.

In fact, the whole issue has become a Hindu-Muslim showdown. In Muslim countries Chota Rajan cannot develop his base but Dawood has an advantage there.

In Europe and America, the mafias do not allow other dons to operate. Sources say Rajan had tried to operate in countries which formed the unbroken Soviet Union, but the KGB could not brook such elements.

After the Soviet Union, the KGB had also become defunct and KGB bosses and agents entered into other businesses or the underworld. Now they have 100 per cent access to all business centers of the former Soviet Union and without their permission, no foreign businessman can operate in any of these countries.

Secondly, Dawood still has influence in the Mumbai underworld and many responsible persons are on his payroll including sharpshooters of the Mumbai police. This has become the matter of investigation as many of those shot for being members of the Dawood gang actually belonged to the Chota Rajan gang.

While Mumbai police is hunting the Rajan gangs, the Indian sensitive agencies support Rajan, though discreetly. These agencies are constantly protecting him from Dawood’s sharpshooters as well as the Mumbai police.

This is evident by the fact that Rajan’s right hand man Babloo Srivastava is also being ‘used’ by sensitive agencies whenever his services are needed. At present Babloo is in the Lucknow jail but he is enjoying the full ‘five-star facilities’ inside, courtesy the security agencies. He still manages his kidnapping business with Rajan’s help.

Babloo operates through Fazalu after they first met in 1995 in Tihar Jail, New Delhi, when he was there on charges of extortion. Since then Fazalu has been operating on Babloo’s instructions. Their association came into open in 1996 when Fazalu kidnapped one of the owners of Hyatt Regency Hotel, Umesh Shroff in New Delhi.

In 1997, Fazalu escaped to Nepal when his attempt to kidnap a businessman in Mumbai failed. His girlfriend Archana Sharma divulged all the secrets about how they were involved in various kidnappings and extortions on the instructions of Babloo Srivastava who operated from jail with Chota Rajan’s help.

Sources told the South Asia Tribune that Fazalu usually intimidates his ‘target’ in the name of Chota Rajan from satellite phone which is untraceable in India. Indian agencies do not possess instruments and equipment to trace a call from a satellite phone. They can trace the details of calls made by the GSM or CDMA mobile phones only.

Babloo Srivastava was first allegedly used by Indian sensitive agencies in the murder of Mirza Dilshad Beg who was a Dawood-ISI front man in Nepal. Sources say that Babloo’s henchmen Ravi and Vikki had killed Beg, an MP in the Nepalese Parliament, on June 29, 1995 when two ‘unknown’ assailants fired at him.

Initially, Babloo was very close to Beg, and Beg even had managed a fake passport for him to go abroad to avoid arrest by the Indians. But after the 1992 Bombay Bomb Blast, ‘patriotism’ and ‘nationalism’ prevailed, and Babloo and Chota Rajan parted ways from Dawood and his gang.

Babloo Srivastava’s former aide BP Singh told the South Asia Tribune from Lucknow that “Babloo was initially with Dawood. He was also very close to Mirza Dilshad Beg. In fact they used to meet at the Karnali Hotel in Kathmandu that was also the base of the ISI. Babloo once mentioned to me that a Pakistani filmmaker was also involved in this hotel business.”

“I vividly remember that some Pakistani diplomats used to visit that hotel. I remember seeing them once in that hotel. Actually a couple, Raja Irfanullah and Zahida Awan, owned that hotel. It was the center of dubious activities,” BP Singh said.

It is noteworthy that BP Singh is also close to a former Janata Dal Member of Parliament from an eastern district of Uttar Pradesh.

Babloo Srivastava initially had offered help in Dawood’s case to get some facilities in jail. Sources say that he is living a five-star life in Lucknow jail. He also contested the 2002 Legislative Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh and May 2004 Parliament elections, but lost.

Ironically this king kidnapper has turned into a writer and one of his books, written in Hindi, is entitled, ‘Apharan Se Kaise Bachen’ (How to Protect Ourselves From Kidnappers). Sources say he is also writing a book on Dawood Ibrahim and his modus operandi.

These sources told the South Asia Tribune Babloo Srivastava is providing information about Dawood to the sensitive agencies who used this info during the Secretary level talks between India and Pakistan. In fact, this is all being done at the instance of Indian sensitive agencies to put pressure on Pakistan to hand over Dawood to India or abandon him to be killed by the goons of Chota Rajan-Babloo Srivastava.

This is also evident from the Most Wanted list of the Interpol in which Chota Rajan’s name is ‘missing’ though other petty offenders are there against whom Red Corner Notices have been issued.

It is also noteworthy that the agencies have neither issued Red Corner notice against Chota Rajan nor included his name in the ‘Most Wanted’ list. The names which do appear on the Red Corner List include Amanullah Khan, Dawood Ibrahim, Memon Ayub, Prabhakaran, Merchant Tahir, Sheikh Shakil, Al Bashar Muhammed Amin, Wassan Singh, Hitesh Kalita, Roop Chand Pardesi, Khatri Riyaz, Esmail Haji Ahmed Ebrahim, Sayeed Arif, Chandrashekhar Reddy, Muhammed Ahmed Dosa, Ramesh Perumal, Paramjeet Singh Mallih and Jumani Samira (woman offender).

Intelligence experts say that Dawood would be eliminated by the ISI itself whenever he becomes irrelevant. The US has already declared him as a Global terrorist for his alleged links with Al-Qaeda. International pressure is gradually mounting on Pakistan on this issue.

Sources say that the ISI has already started nurturing another group. Under this strategy the group of Anwar (Chota Shakeel’s brother), Syed Muzaffar, and Yusuf Ghodrawala is being raised to substitute the D-Company. It is said that Anwar is in Pakistan while the two others have made their base in Thailand.

Don blows in Pak face

Don blows in Pak face

AMIR MIR

The July 11 bomb blast in Karachi’s Kawish Crown Plaza situated at Shahrah-e-Faisal was not conspicuous for the damage caused, despite the death of two people and the considerable amount of debris the explosion left behind. What made the national media sit up and take note was a statement made by the inspector general of the Sindh police at the scene of the crime.

The building ostensibly owned by one Ahmed Jamal, said the IGP, actually belonged to Dawood Ibrahim. The IGP’s statement was backed the same day by the de facto Sindh home minister, Aftab Sheikh, who told reporters in Thatta that the Mumbai mafioso had a ‘‘network from Mumbai to Karachi and was working in both countries’’.

This was the first public admission from senior government functionaries that the Mumbai crime king, Dawood Ibrahim of the infamous D-Company, may have acquired substantial interests in Pakistan’s business capital. The importance of this admission rests on the fact that, prior to this, the Pakistan government was adamant that no such person was present or operating in Pakistan either directly or through his proxies.

Analysts believe that the apparent slip-ups on the part of the IGP and the Sindh home minister may have been deliberate leaks, aimed at lifting the lid off what promises to be a real-life crime thriller that would put the best of Bollywood to shame.

These analysts argue that the Musharraf government has been extremely uneasy at persistent reports, emanating mostly from India, about Dawood Ibrahim’s presence in Pakistan and the support that he allegedly enjoys from the Pakistani intelligence apparatus.

In September 2000, English monthly Newsline ran a detailed story claiming that Ibrahim was, indeed, in Karachi and under the protection of Pakistan’s premier military intelligence outfit, the ISI. The story, which detailed his lifestyle along with a report on his enmity with Chhota Rajan, drew an extremely harsh reaction from Pakistani authorities, including the president.

Meanwhile, India has consistently kept Pakistan under pressure over the issue, the latest example being a ‘‘request’’ from the Indian government to ‘‘counter-check’’ CBI information that Dawood Ibrahim, Chhota Shakeel and Tiger Memon were granted Pakistani citizenship in June this year. The three are amongst the top of CBI’s 20 most wanted people it alleges are hiding in Pakistan.

The Indian government claims that the Mumbai police has already confirmed the CBI’s information but Delhi would still want a confirmation from Pakistan. According to reports submitted by the CBI and the Mumbai police to the Indian home ministry last week, it has been alleged that Ibrahim and his lieutenant Shakeel were recently spotted in Peshawar.

Sources in the Pakistani intelligence network told the Herald that the Indian government has forwarded most parts of the CBI report to Pakistan, claiming that the ‘‘information’’ was being provided to Pakistan for counter-checking.

According to this report, Dawood Ibrahim’s ‘‘Pakistani’’ name under a new identity is Iqbal Seth alias Amer Sahib, while Chhota Shakeel is Haji Mohammed and Tiger Memon is Ahmed Jamil.

The report also alleges that of the 10 passports Ibrahim ostensibly uses, two were issued by the Pakistani authorities. They have even given G866537 as the number of the passport allegedly issued to Dawood Ibrahim in Rawalpindi on August 12, 1991. The CBI claims that another passport was issued to Ibrahim the next year.

Interestingly, the CBI report also hints that the infamous operator may now be trying to wind up some of his operations in Pakistan. Alleging that both Ibrahim and Chhota Shakeel have recently taken up residence in Islamabad, the CBI claims that they are in the process of selling off their properties located in various parts of Pakistan. The same report warns that two of his accomplices, Nasser Charsi and Fahim, may be planning to join their boss in Islamabad.

Pakistani analysts believe such ‘‘requests’’ from India may be little more than a tool for keeping Pakistan under pressure. However, senior intelligence officials seem convinced that the Kawish Crown bomb blast was a result of growing friction between two international cartels, one led by Dawood Ibrahim and the other by his arch-rival Chhota Rajan.

What makes their operations a security threat for Pakistan, say these officials, is the possibility that these cartels may have involved the intelligence agencies of Pakistan and India in their dangerous power play.

In fact, one of Pakistan’s premier intelligence outfits has already concluded that RAW may have played a major role in engineering the Kawish Crown blast. ‘‘We can rule out with authority the involvement of any jihadi element in the blast since the extremists have no interest in the Kawish Crown Plaza,’’ says a senior intelligence official.

According to these sources, RAW may have engineered the blast through Ibrahim’s rival group of gangsters led by Chhota Rajan, primarily to convey a warning to Ibrahim that his trusted lieutenant, Jamal Memon alias Tiger Memon who uses the building, was vulnerable.

From what can be pieced together through the sketchy leaks from official quarters so far, the enmity between Dawood Ibrahim and Chhota Rajan represents the classic falling out between former partners in crime. Ibrahim and Chhota Rajan apparently parted ways due to their differences over the control of Bollywood.

Suspecting that Pakistan’s intelligence community may have extended protection to Dawood Ibrahim, RAW chose to cultivate Chhota Rajan against Ibrahim. Supporting this line of speculation is the abortive plot to kill Chhota Rajan in Bangkok three years ago.

The two gangs, it is said, have since been at war: the Malir Road ambush in Karachi on August 18, 2001, is rumoured to be an attempt by Chhota Rajan to kill one of the assassins hired for the Bangkok hit, Shoaib Khan.

According to the CBI, Ibrahim became drawn into the communal infighting that swept India after Hindu zealots pulled down the Babri mosque in 1992. Mumbai was badly hit by communal rioting as hundreds of Muslims were butchered. It is not clear why Dawood Ibrahim chose to retaliate (the Indians allege he followed instructions from the ISI while the Pakistanis feel his motivation was primarily religious) but the CBI regards him as the mastermind behind the subsequent Mumbai bombings.

The story the CBI has spun regarding Ibrahim’s alleged connections with the Pakistani intelligence is again no less of a thriller. According to the CBI, the perpetrators went to Dubai using their Indian passports where Ibrahim allegedly provided them with Pakistani visas on plain pieces of paper so that their passports would not carry any records.

They landed in Karachi and were taken to a training camp in the NWFP. The CBI concludes they were sent back to Mumbai after being trained in explosives by the now defunct Harkat-ul-Ansar.

According to the Indian government’s claim, shortly after Dawood Ibrahim left Dubai for Karachi in the wake of the Mumbai bombings, he was issued a passport backdated to August 12, 1991. Soon afterwards, according to the CBI, he moved into a 6,000 yard house in Clifton with amenities such as a swimming pool, gymnasium and tennis court.

He subsequently smuggled his family out of Mumbai. The entire Ibrahim family, alleges the CBI, now holds Pakistani passports. The Pakistani authorities have repeatedly described Indian allegations as ‘‘baseless propaganda’’. However, statements from the Sindh home minister and his IGP have at least established that Dawood Ibrahim, irrespective of where he draws protection from, indeed has business in Karachi.

Mumbai has already had a taste of the underworld’s power and destructive potential and the Kawish Crown blasts may be an indication of what could be in store for Karachi if the authorities do not move fast.