A Pakistani spy who infiltrated Indian security agencies had helped Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) in Pakistan zero in on the spot in coastal Mumbai where the 26/11 handlers landed before carrying out the attack, claims a book by two British journalists.
The agent with code name Honey Bee stung the Indian security network from inside, the book titled ‘The Siege’ says.
It goes on to add that the information on Badhwar Park, the landing site, was shared by ISI operatives with Pakistani-American Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) operative David Headley.
The book by Adrian Levy and Cathy Scott-Clark also claims one Major Iqbal gave Headley classified Indian files from within Indian police and Army on training and limitations of the country’s security personnel.
“The Major boasted that they (ISI) had a super agent at work in New Delhi who was known as Honey Bee. The Major revealed while he would guide Headley, the Mumbai operation would be run by Lashkar,” the book claims.
It says before leaving Pakistan after undergoing an intelligence training, Headley met Major Iqbal, who gave him a bundle of counterfeit Indian currency and a suggestion: “Honey Bee, the ISI double agent, who had provided the classified Indian training manuals had come up with a potential landing area, in Badhwar Park, a fishing colony in South Mumbai, reporting that it was only patchily patrolled and was shielded from the road,” the book says.
Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde and the then Intelligence Bureau chief, PC Haldar, refused to comment on the claims saying they were yet to read the book.
A group of 10 terrorists of LeT, including Ajmal Kasab, who was captured by Mumbai Police and hanged, had landed at Badhwar Park on November 26, 2008. They triggered mayhem in the city, killing 166 people, including Mumbai Police’s Anti-Terror Squad chief Hemant Karkare.
The book says till date Major Iqbal and Honey Bee have not been identified.
Listing their sources, the authors, who write for British newspaper The Guardian, said they had gone through classified documents of Indian, the USA and the British security sources, thousands of unpublished court documents and confidential annexure submitted to the Pradhan Commission, which was set up on December 30, 2008, to probe the 26/11 attacks.