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Updated: December 28, 2009 16:27 IST

Headley’s acquaintance lived in India for 9 years on tourist visa

PTI
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VISA WEAKNESS: A courtroom drawing of David Coleman Headley pleading not guilty before a U.S District Judge. Headley reportedly knew an American who has been living in India on a tourist visa for nearly a decade. File photo
AP VISA WEAKNESS: A courtroom drawing of David Coleman Headley pleading not guilty before a U.S District Judge. Headley reportedly knew an American who has been living in India on a tourist visa for nearly a decade. File photo

Investigation into Headley has exposed an embarrassing example of misuse of India's tourist visa. A probe revealed that the Pakistan born terror-suspect knew an American who has been living in India and setting up businesses for no less than nine years, all on a tourist visa.

In a new twist to the Headley case, it now turns out that the US national arrested for plotting terror strikes in India was in touch with another American who has been living in this country on a tourist visa for nine years and running a massage parlour.

During the probe by the National Investigation Agency, it has emerged that LeT terror suspect David Headley got in touch with the American and his female companion through his Moroccan girlfriend in Manali, Home Ministry officials said.

The American was later spotted in Goa. A scrutiny of his travel documents surprised the security officials who found that he has been living in India on a tourist visa for the last nine years.

“He has been doing everything - setting up business, running a massage parlour, tourist centre etc,” they said.

The couple has been interrogated by the NIA which has recorded their statement. The American and his companion admitted to knowing the Moroccan woman, who according to the security agencies, was in Manali doing reconnaissance of a Jewish centre.

49-year-old Headley was arrested on October three last for plotting terror strikes in India at the behest of Pakistan-based Lashker-e-Taiba. Headley has been charge-sheeted by the FBI for being part of the criminal conspiracy behind the 26/11 in Mumbai attacks.

Among his targets were the National Defence College in Delhi, RSS headquarters in Nagpur and some film studios and BARC in Mumbai.

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