Underworld don and India’s most wanted man Dawood Ibrahim lives in Karachi protected by the ISI that provides him security every time he steps out, Lashkar bomb-maker Abdul Karim Tunda is said to have told the Delhi Police.
The 70-year-old, who masterminded more than 40 blasts across north India between December 1996 and January 1998, was also in touch with many anti-India outfits, including the Babbar Khalsa International (BKI), which is looking to revive militancy in Punjab, sources said.
“It was his excellent performance in terror activities that impressed Dawood and he asked for a meeting with Tunda,” a senior investigating officer told HT on Sunday.
Tunda, who fled to Pakistan in 1995 after he was declared a wanted terrorist by India, met Dawood nine times after the first meeting in 2000. The last he met him was in 2012, the officer said.
When asked if he carried out the terror strikes on Dawood’s orders, Tunda, who was also a talent spotter for Laskhar-e-Taiba, replied in negative, he said.
Tunda, who fell out with Lashkar in 2003 over funds, worked closely with the ISI and recruited jihadis for it. He ran a network of madrasas in Karachi and used his oratory skills -- said to be impressive -- to motivate young men to join jihad, the police said.
He was also in touch with Jamat-ud-Dawa chief and Lashkar founder Hafiz Saeed, and LeT commander Zaki-ur-Rehman Lakhvi, the masterminds of the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks.
“Tunda has admitted that he was in Pakistan till a week before Independence Day. He met Saeed and Lakhvi, who asked him to visit India,” the officer said.
The Delhi Police believe that Tunda was at the August 8 rally in Karachi in which Saeed declared war on India. The LeT leaders asked him to carry out terror attacks in India, the officer said.
Tunda had an excellent network of operatives that he used to send men, explosives and fake currency into India.
BKI’s Wadhwa Singh used his network to push explosives into India to carry out strikes in Delhi during Commonwealth Games but arrest of his accomplices in Bangladesh and India thwarted the plan.