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Evidence links Pakistani Major to Headley: India

delhi Updated: Dec 10, 2009 20:55 IST

IANS
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There is "some evidence" to link a retired Pakistan major to David Coleman Headley, the Pakistani-American accused of conducting reconnaissance missions for the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, Home Secretary GK Pillai said in New Delhi on Thursday.

Pillai also said India would like to interrogate and seek to extradite Headley, who is in US custody and has been charged by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) with planning the 2008 Mumbai terrorist attacks that killed 166 people, including six Americans.

"We will seek access for interrogation and extradition of Headley once NIA (National Investigation Agency) completes its own probe into his links to the Mumbai attacks," Pillai told reporters at a defence function here.

Asked about the role of Abdur Rehman Hashim, a retired major in the Pakistan Army accused of playing a link between Al Qaeda and Headley, the official said: "There is some evidence about this. An FBI team is already in Pakistan."

An FBI chargesheet says Hashim coordinated the activities of Headley.

The official said India's NIA had been investigating Headley's role in planning the Mumbai carnage blamed on the Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba.

The FBI Monday charged Headley, alias Daood Gilani, with conducting "extensive surveillance of targets in Mumbai for more than two years" preceding the 26/11 terrorist attack. The accused has denied the charges.

The home secretary rebutted Headley for pleading not guilty to charges that he planned the Mumbai terrorist attack.

"Obviously David Headley won't confess. We have evidence of his links with 26/11 attacks."

Pillai said the FBI team that visited India had shared with NIA evidence about Headley's role in the attack.