INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM MONITOR--PAPER NO.421
The possibility of the involvement of Dawood Ibrahim, the Indian mafia leader, living in Karachi,in the serial blasts in Uttar Pradesh in November last year, in Jaipur in May last, in Bengaluru on July 25 and in Ahmedabad on July 26 needs to be looked into for the following reasons:
The so-called Indian Mujahideen, which has claimed responsibility for these incidents first made its appearance after the judgement was delivered by a Mumbai court last year awarding severe sentences in the case relating to the Mumbai blasts of March,1993. The March 1993 blasts were organised by Dawood Ibrahim with the help of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI). Many of those convicted in the case were his close associates.
All the blasts, which have taken place since November last, have involved the mobilisation of considerable human and material resources.
This is so particularly in Gujarat. There were 20 blasts in Ahmedabad. In Surat, 17 unexploded improvised explosive devices (IED) have been found after the Ahmedabad blasts. Normally, terrorists follow the principle of one perpetrator for planting one IED. That means, there were at least 37 perpetrators. Normally, each perpetrator has at least one person to provide the back-up support.Thus, it is estimated that the total number of individuals involved must have been at least 70 plus.
The group, which was involved in the terrorist strikes in Gujarat, was reported to have procured or stolen at least three motor vehicles in Mumbai and brought them to Gujarat. Two of these were used in Ahmedabad and one with some LNG cylinders was found in Surat.
The mobilisation of such a large number of people plus the procurement of the motor vehicles would have involved considerable expenditure. Only Dawood Ibrahim would have had such resources and the ability to mobilise such a large number of people.
If he had orchestrated these strikes, where did he get these men trained----in Pakistan with the ISI's help as he did before March 1993 or in India? In March 1993, he used only Indian Muslims for carrying out the blasts.
In March 1993, he got all the material for the blasts from the ISI. This time, the material would appear to have been procured in India.
3.An intriguing aspect is why all the IEDs planted in Surat did not explode. Some reports have said that it was because of the rains.The IEDs in Surat must have been planted at the same time as those in Ahmedabad. On July 26, when the blasts took place in Ahmedabad, there were no rains, which came only the next day. If the rains were the reason for the failure, the IEDs in Surat must have been timed to explode a day after the blasts in Ahmedabad.
4. The other possibility is that the terrorists deliberately did not want the Surat IEDs to explode and wanted the police to remain preoccupied with defusing them so that they can carry out blasts in some other town. ( 29-7-08)
(The writer is Additional Secretary (retd), Cabinet Secretariat, Govt. of India, New Delhi, and, presently, Director, Institute For Topical Studies, Chennai. E-mail:firstname.lastname@example.org )