Pakistan has asked India for additional information in the Mumbai attacks case relating to the forensics of the evidence available with Indian investigators.
Interior Minister Rehman Malik said on Saturday Pakistan’s indent for more information was included in a dossier handed over by the Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir to Indian High Commissioner Sharat Sabharwal here. The dossier also recaps and updates the investigations into the Mumbai attack by Pakistan.
The additional information Pakistan is seeking relates to forensic data for a piece of pink foam, said to have been recovered by Indian investigators from the boat that the Mumbai attackers used.
Some pink foam was also recovered by Pakistani investigators and Mr. Malik said an exact match between the two was needed to present as evidence in court.
Pakistan also wants the forensic analysis of the communication intercepts between the attackers and their handlers, and the details of a Yamaha engine that powered the dinghy used by the attackers to land on the Mumbai shoreline.
Mr. Malik said Pakistani investigators were also seeking the certified depositions made by witnesses in the Mumbai trial court, particularly by the officials of the United States Federal Bureau of Investigations.
“We want maximum information from India because we want to make our case solid and credible in such a way that culprits do not get benefit of doubt,” the Minister told a press conference. “We want to take the entire investigation to its logical conclusion, that is we want to get them convictions.”
The Pakistani investigators, Mr. Malik said, had already done a professional job of turning sketchy information into “tangible evidence” that could be presented in court.
Seven important suspects had been arrested – they include the Lashkar-e-Toiba operations chief Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi – and charges would be framed against them at the next hearing of the anti-terrorism court, Mr. Malik said.
An in camera hearing of the proceedings in the case was held at the ATC in Adiala Jail on Saturday. The Interior Minister revealed that judge Baqir Ali Rana had announced that he would formally indict the seven at the next hearing on September 26
In addition, 101 witness statements had been recorded; 126 pieces of evidence seized; “a number of” hideouts identified; bank accounts connected to the case traced; and, a boat used in transporting the attackers seized.
“The results have been tremendously good,” Mr. Malik said. “What we have done in this short time nobody could have done”
While this was not being appreciated, he said, “what we have not done is being advocated against us, and [that] is Hafiz Saeed.”
He lamented that had India shared information from the interrogation of Fahim Ansari, who was arrested in 2008, the attack could have been prevented.
“Our concern is, why this information was not shared with us,” he said.